Right 2 Know Malaysia (R2Kmy)
Did you know that as a citizen of a democratic nation, you have the Right to Know how your country is being governed?
Did you know that Freedom of Information is a human right that every person possesses by virtue of being human?
Freedom of Information, as per the United Nations definition, is:
…the right to access information held by public bodies. It is an integral part of the fundamental right of freedom of expression, as recognized by Resolution 59 of the UN General Assembly adopted in 1946, as well as by Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948), which states that the fundamental right of freedom of expression encompasses the freedom to “to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers”.
In Malaysia, legal guarantee of the Right to Know is limited to two states, Selangor & Penang, with its respective Freedom of Information Enactments (FOIE) – which remains obstructed by Federal level laws
The FOIEs in both states allows us to obtain most information that’s owned by the respective state governments, but the Official Secrets Act (OSA) 1972 invalidates the FOIEs jurisdiction as soon as the requested information involves that which is marked ‘Top Secret’, ‘Secret’, ‘Confidential’ or ‘Restricted’ under the OSA.
The lack of a federal-level FOI guarantee, legal provision, and its subsequent restraint over state-level FOIEs promotes secrecy in the federal level governments, which provides a conducive breeding ground for corruption.
Thus, with that in mind, the Center to Combat Corruption & Cronyism, and the Sinar Project have jointly initiated this Right 2 Know Malaysia (R2Kmy) campaign to:
- Create awareness on the Right to Know and Freedom of Information (FOI) in Malaysia;
- Educate the public on the importance and role of free-flowing information in corruption-free accountable governance;
- Promote citizens’ engagement in utilising existing state-level FOIE provisions;
- Aid state governments in enhancing their existing FOIEs;
- Advocate the implementation of a FOI law in the federal level; and
- Champion the abolishment of archaic laws restricting freedom of information and expression.
About C4 Center:
The Center to Combat Corruption & Cronyism (C4 Center) is a policy advocacy, non-profit center, dedicated to fighting corruption, cronyism, and the problems stemming from it, at all levels of government.
It seeks to open up governments and change the culture of governance by placing accountability, transparency, and integrity at the heart of public policies and governmental administration.
C4 Center works with public institutions, governments, political parties and civil society organizations to build our vision or a corruption-free and open society.
About Sinar Project:
The Sinar Project is an initiative using open technology and applications to systematically make important information public and more accessible to the Malaysian people. It aims to improve governance and encourage greater citizen involvement in the public affairs of the nation by making the Malaysian Government more open, transparent and accountable. Our goals are as follows:
We support the Declaration on Parliamentary Openness and Malaysian organizations working towards the same goals.