In 2011-2012 the Institute for Development of Freedom of Information (IDFI) sent out 7,339 questions to 229 public institutions with a request for public information. In response 3,763 complete answers have been received – that’s the result of the opendata.ge public information database activities presented today, April 12 by IDFI.
The number of incomplete answers to the requested information amounts to 1,091, the answers were lacking legal ground in 265 cases, in 2,220 cases the applications for public information were fully denied.
Unlike the first stage of the opendata.ge activities which involved requests for public information from central agencies only, IDFI’s Director Giorgi Kldiashvili clarified, at the second stage the requests for public data have been sent out to the regions as well – municipalities, governors’ administrations.
“In terms of quantity the result was better than expected. We received complete answers from regions. Current trend looks better than in 2012. I think our activities have been conducive to that – the request for the provision of public data has gone up. We are cooperating with public agencies, we appeal to courts, we lodge administrative complaints. The raise of requests for public data has been followed by the increase in the provision of public information by public agencies,” says Giorgi Kldiashvili.
Certificates and prizes have been awarded to the agencies that secured access to information in 2011. The awarded agencies include Legal Aid Service, Georgian Public Defender’s Office, Center for Electoral Systems Development Reforms and Trainings, Olympic Trainings Centre of Georgia, Eurasian Transport Corridor Investment Center, National Statistics Service, Laboratory of the Ministry of Agriculture, Georgian National Tourism Agency, Service Agency of Ministry of Finance, State Care Agency, National Bank of Georgia, Civil Service Bureau, Data Exchange Agency, Levan Samkharauli National Forensic Bureau.
Award-winning regional public agencies include Rustavi City Hall, Dmanisi, Chokhatauri, Telavi, Martvili and Akhlatsikhe Municipality Gamegobas, administrations of state representatives to Samtskhe-Javakheti and Samegrelo-Upper Svanetia.
The Ministry of Defense of Georgia has been recognized as the most closed agency of the year. The Service Agency of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and National Agency of Execution of Non-Custodial Sentences and Probation have been awarded with certificates for restricting public information in 2011. The representatives of the aforementioned agencies did not show up at the presentation to receive certificates.
Today IDFI presented Freedom of Information – Guidebook based on the Institute’s experience in requesting public information. The guidebook aims to help interested individuals to correctly understand and apply legal acts related to access to public information.