Author(s): Access to Information Authority, Presidency of the Government, General Directorate for Reforms and Prospective Studies and E-Government Unit

Resource Type: Case studies

Countries: Tunisia

SDG: GOAL 16. Peace and Justice Strong Institutions

Keywords: Access to Information, Citizen Engagement, Transparency, Accountability

2016

Strengthening the Legal Framework of Access to Information - Tunisia

Source in English: ESCWA-OECD Case Study - Strengthening the Legal Framework of Access to Information

This project was a key part of the 3rd Open Government Partnership (OGP) action plan of Tunisia, and was developed to promote the implementation of the access to information legal framework through various measures and initiatives.  Supporting this legal framework helps improve public governance, enhance transparency and properly apply the right to access information.

Implementation: 2016 (in progress)

Contributor(s)

Several partners contributed to this project, including:

  • Access to Information Authority.
  • Presidency of the Government General Directorate for Reforms and Prospective Studies and e-Government Unit.
  • Civil society organizations.
  • Donors.

Purpose

This project aims to achieve the following objectives:

  • Raising awareness among public officials on the benefits of supporting the right to access information and engaging in the related openness and transparency process.
  • Complying with the organic law no. 22-2016 on access to information and the provisions on proactive information dissemination.
  • Instilling a new culture within administrations that is based on openness and cooperation.
  • Outlining several practical procedures aiming to manage the change brought up by the implementation of the Access to Information Law.
  • Improving competencies and building capacities within the administrations in charge of executing the related law.
  • Establishing tools and frameworks to improve the quality of access to information and assist officials in this area.

Functions

The implementation of this project was carried out in a framework of coordination between the Government and all stakeholders involved and by adopting a participatory approach throughout all stages.  It covered several aspects related to access to information and included practical measures and procedures to support its legal framework.

Clients

Key beneficiaries of this project are the citizens, public officials at central and local levels, the Government, and non-governmental and civil society organizations.

Outcome

The progress of project implementation allowed achieving concrete results, such as:

  • Establishing the Access to Information Authority which was a commitment in the 2nd OGP action plan in Tunisia.
  • Elaborating two guidelines on access to information for civil servants and public institutions (links below).
  • Issuing an explanatory circular on the provisions of the organic law on access to information, aiming to clarify the obligations assumed by the public institutions subject to the related law.
  • Designing and implementing a capacity-building programme and organizing training sessions on access to information for the benefit of civil servants and public institutions.

Challenges

Several challenges were encountered during the implementation and have revolved around:

  • Raising awareness among citizens and public institutions on the importance of the legal framework of access to information.
  • Encouraging and generalizing the use of technology in public institutions.
  • Ensuring the compliance of public institutions with the Access to Information Law.
  • Designing a capacity-building program on access to information for public officials and particularly those in charge of executing the law.
  • Providing the human and technical resources required to be in line with the provisions of the organic law on access to information.

Useful links

Open Government Partnership – Tunisia
Access to Information Authority (INAI) – Tunisia
Organic law no. 22-2016 (in Arabic)
Guide on the laws supporting Access to Information
Guide on the laws supporting Access to Information (in Arabic)
Guide on Access to Information based on the basic law (in Arabic)

 

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