Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Monday, December 17th, 2018

Threatening Media Outlets Not Acceptable: Abdullah

Threatening Media Outlets  Not Acceptable: Abdullah

KABUL - Chief Executive Officer Abdullah on Wednesday reaffirmed his support to the freedom of expression and access to information and warned threatening media outlets by government institutions was not acceptable.
The CEO was addressing a gathering marking the International Day of Universal Access to Information in Kabul. He said hiding information widened the gap between the government and the masses.
Abdullah said the people were real owners of information and the government was a body to protect them. He renewed his support to the media, the freedom of expression and access to information.
He said if any government institute threatened any media outlet over sharing information, this behavior would not be acceptable. He asked media outlets to inform his office in such cases.
Hawa Alam Nuristani, head of the Oversight Commission on Access to Information (OCAI) referring to the commission’s activities, demanded provincial officers and a separate budget like other government institutions.
The CEO asked them to provide detail information about the OCAI administrative structure and specific amount of budget so that necessary steps could be taken.
Pajhwok Afghan News Director Danish Karokhel during his address to the gathering said access to information could ensure accountability and transparency and make government accountable.
About some government institutions refusing to share information, Karokhel said: “Access to information enhances public trust in government performance. We want all government institutions to make sure public trust is won when it comes to sharing information.”
Referring to Pajhwok Afghan News report on the presence of several militants groups in Afghanistan, Karokhel said his news agency was denied help by some government institutions in compiling the report in term of access to information.
Only the National Directorate of Security (NDS) provided half a page information, he said.
UNESCO director in Afghanistan also termed access to information the right of people.
The Dutch embassy second secretary termed access to information as vital for democratic states and assured his country’s support in efforts for access to information. (Pajhwok)