28 September 2012

SAHA Freedom of Information Programme launches new website

The Freedom of Information Programme (FOIP) at SAHA commemorated the 10th International Right to Know Day by launching a new website profiling information activism in South Africa, in order to demonstrate the connection between the right to know, broader development debates and transparency and accountability agendas.

At the centre of the website is a robust online information management system designed to manage and track requests submitted in terms of the Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA). Dubbed the Request Tracker, it profiles the access to information work undertaken by FOIP and its network partners in South Africa, allowing visitors to the website to track requests made under PAIA. Visitors to the site can track the lifecycle of each PAIA request, view the types of information being requested, whether access to the information has been granted or denied by the information holder and any appeal process. The records released as a result of those requests submitted by SAHA can be downloaded from an online archive in SAHA's archival collection AL2878: The Freedom of Information Programme Collection.

In essence the PAIA Tracker is a mechanism for tracking compliance of both private and public bodies in making information available in line with the constitutional right of access to information, while simultaneously increasing civil society's capacity to use the right of access to information to support strategic advocacy and struggles for justice in South Africa.

The website also serves as an essential advocacy tool for freedom of information activists within South Africa and throughout the region, providing a regular electronic news service monitoring and commenting on access to information efforts and developments in South Africa and across the continent, as well as constituting a central resource for access to information related legislation, jurisprudence and resources to support access to information training and use.

Visit the website.

For more information contact the Freedom of Information Programme