KATHMANDU, Aug 2: National Information Commission (NIC) has asked all I/NGOs to respect the Right to Information (RTI) Act and disseminate information related to their activities to the general public on a regular basis to ensure transparency and accountability.
Speaking in an interaction program organized by the NIC with the development partners on Monday, Chief Information Commissioner Krishna Hari Baskota also asked the I/NGOs to compulsorily allocate at least 1 per cent of their budget under the RTI head and use it to disseminate information to the general public in line with the RTI Act 2008.
“The NIC has developed 20 indicators for RTI audit and all the 31 ministries have been carrying out RTI audit based on the indicators. Since the RTI Act defines I/NGOs as public bodies, the development partners should carry out RTI audit as per the act,” Baskota said.
He said that the NIC decided to ask development partners to act according to the act as part of the commission's effort to implement the law effectively.
“So far, we have found that development partners are comparatively transparent as they regularly upload information on their activities on their websites. But still, we decided to hold the interaction to remind the development partners about provisions of RTI Act and take initiatives to follow it,” he added.
Representatives from various I/NGOs, including World Bank, Asia Development Bank, UNDP, UNFPA, UN Women, Norwegian Embassy and Embassy of Finland, among others, were present in the program.
Baskota also urged I/NGOs to inform NIC about their initiatives on raising awareness about RTI act among the general public. “Many INGOs are already working to raise awareness about right to information. Together, we can collaborate and work effectively to raise awareness about RTI among the public,” he added.