Transparency Institute Launches
An Access to Information Seminar was the focus of the launch of the Transparency Institute of Guyana that is hoping to become a national chapter of the International NGO Transparency International.
The launch of the Institute resulted in the participants examining what can be done in the country to access information, protect whistle blowers and eradicate corruption. President of Transparency Institute of Guyana Nadia Sagar in her presentation at the Saturday afternoon seminar examined Access to Information from a global perspective. She noted that in India the fight against corruption has been especially vigorous.
Although criticizing the formation of the Transparency body at first, the Government of Guyana sent two high-level officials to the seminar. Prime Minister Sam Hinds attended and was very active in seeking answers about the proprietary nature of some information and whether the institute would scrutinize both the Public and private sectors.
Adviser on Governance in the office of the President Gail Texeiera made a presentation on the Access to Information bill claiming in her presentation that much thought went into the Bill that the Special select committee considered and presented to Parliament last Thursday.
Speaking in his capacity as secretary of the Bar Association commentator Chris Ram challenged some of the provisions of the new Access to Information Bill. Ram contended that among other deficiencies was the time frame for dealing with requests was too long.
Director of the Transparency Institute Dr. Thomas Singh while welcoming the new legislation cautioned that legislation is just the hardware it is now up to the software to make things change in the society.