Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Info law to be open to input

Info law to be open to input

Info law to be open to input

The Ministry of Information yesterday announced a three-year public consultation period on a new access to information draft law that has been in the works since 2007.

But freedom of information advocates greeted the news with scepticism, citing a lack of representation from civil society on the working group drafting the law.

Ouk Kimseng, deputy secretary of the state news agency AKP, said yesterday that the Ministry of Information would soon launch a website where Cambodians can air their views about the current draft law.

“In order to make this work transparent, the ministry will launch a new website to publish information about the process of drafting this law, so that the public can offer comments for or against it before we do a final draft,” he said.

“Sometimes normal people’s ideas can be better than legal experts,” he added. “We will listen to all of it. Let’s see what they think. In general, the ministry welcomes all ideas to make access to information better.”

UNESCO is supporting the project under an agreement backed by a $1 million grant from the Swedish government.

Representatives of UNESCO could not be reached yesterday.

The announcement came exactly a year after the government issued a statement confirming its commitment to passing an access to information law, according to the Advocacy and Policy Institute (API), a local research organisation.

Neb Sinthay, API’s director, cautiously welcomed the Information Ministry’s announcement yesterday.

“To ensure transparency, API plans to continue its work to finish our analysis” of the draft law, he said.

Pa Ngoun Teang, executive director of the Cambodian Centre for Independent Media, said all government financial information should be made public.

“Our group has been pushing for this law for 10 years,” he said. “We think it’s important to force the government to open all information related to their work.”

MOST VIEWED

  • Temi tourism project approved by the CDC

    The $500.4 million Tourism, Ecological, Marine and International (Temi) tourism project has been approved by the Council for the Development of Cambodia (CDC), according to a notice on its Facebook page on Monday. The project is part of Chinese-owned Union City Development Group Co Ltd’s (

  • Rainsy will return at ‘favourable time’

    Opposition figure Sam Rainsy on Saturday suggested he would not return to Cambodia as he had previously promised, saying that like liberators King Father Norodom Sihanouk and Charles de Gaulle, he would only do so at a “favourable time”. “I will go back to Cambodia

  • US Embassy urged to stop ‘disrespecting sovereignty’

    The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation called on the US Embassy in Phnom Penh on Saturday to respect the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations after it called former opposition leader Kem Sokha “an innocent man” – a move deemed to be “disrespecting Cambodia’s

  • NagaWorld casino sees net profit of more than $390M last year

    Phnom Penh’s NagaWorld casino posted a 53 per cent net profit increase last year at $390.6 million, a sum which is almost equal to the combined net profit of all Cambodian commercial banks in 2017. NagaWorld’s parent company, NagaCorp Ltd, is listed on the Hong Kong