11 September 2012

[FYI in PCIJ] FYI for FOI: Youth, students demand right to know, now

The youth and students have spoken: They want to see the Freedom of Information Act passed pronto!

Organizations of the youth and students launched this week the FOI Youth Initiative (FYI) on Facebook, in their resolve to be fully involved in the campaign for the passage of the Freedom of Information Act in Congress.

FYI is part of The Right to Know, Right Now! Coalition, a network of over 160 civil society organizations from labor, business, media, the churches, and various professions that has been at the forefront of the campaign for the passage of the FOI Act in the last 14 years.

On its Facebook page, FYI expressed full “solidarity with different sectors of society in the clamor for more solid mechanisms in ensuring governance that is open and honest to the people.”

“We affirm that our right to information enshrined in the Constitution must be institutionalized through the FOI Law to guarantee that transparency among public officials and employees becomes a norm and not simply a discretion of individuals bound by their terms of office,” it said. “We believe that the FOI Law is a measure that shall curb corruption and advance participatory governance that will ultimately benefit each and every Filipino.”

Initiated by the Student Council of the University of the Philippines’ College of Social Sciences and Philosophy (CSSP), FYI said Malacañang must “not merely express support for the FOI Bill, but (also) strongly push for its enactment in fulfillment of its promise of change under the Administration of President Benigno S. Aquino III.”

Just as important, FYI urged “the Senators and Representatives in the 15th Congress to sincerely respond to the interests of the people by eliminating all obstacles that cause the slow pace of tackling the measure in the legislative mill.”

FYI also exhorted “our fellow young leaders to join us in ensuring the passage of the Freedom of Information Bill into law to strengthen democracy and to transform our government into a genuine instrument of social justice and social progress.”

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