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Implementation of the Inter-American Program on Access to Public Information moves ahead
The OAS Permanent Council’s Committee on
Juridical and Political Affairs (CAJP) this past
March 14 held a meeting where member states
submitted their annual reports on progress and
best practices in implementing the
Inter-American Program on Access to Public
Information, which the General Assembly had
approved in 2016.
At that meeting, the Director of the OAS
Secretariat for Legal Affairs Department of
International Law (DIL)
reported on the work his
area had done to fulfill its mandate to
coordinate the efforts made by all the relevant
actors towards fully implementing the Program.
His report outlines activities carried out to
support countries in their efforts to develop or
strengthen domestic laws on access to public
information – the case of Honduras in 2018 for
instance – and steps taken to update the
Inter-American Model Law adopted in 2010.
Mention was also made of the informal meeting
held in the morning – taking advantage of the
fact that several of the Inter-American
Program’s focal points were attending the CAJP
meeting – to collectively move forward in
implementing the Program and to explore
opportunities for cooperation. The focal points
for Argentina, Chile, El Salvador, and Honduras
took part in that meeting.
The CAJP meeting noted the reports presented by
the various delegations and the informal meeting
organized by the DDI, where a number of
recommendations were made – particularly the one
to consider at another time the possibility of
states reporting gradually, by specific Program
areas, and DIL was requested to submit a
proposal with progress indicators to facilitate
preparation of those reports. The member states
were also encouraged to take advantage of DIL’s
willingness to continue supporting efforts, by
regional countries that so request, to implement
domestic laws to ensure due access to public
information. The Department was urged to
continue raising awareness about the
inter-American legal framework content on access
to public information by organizing training
programs for officials from national access to
information bodies and justice system personnel.
Lastly, the CAJP noted the efforts DIL had been
pursuing in terms of extensive consultations to
identify thematic areas in which it was felt
that the 2010 Model Law needed updating. The
Committee also urged the Department to press
ahead with that effort and as soon as possible
to present the Inter-American Juridical
Committee (CJI) with the findings for
consideration, with a view to being able to have
a new legal instrument as the tenth anniversary
of the adoption of the Inter-American Model Law
on Access to Public Information is commemorated
– that is, in 2020.
The reports submitted by the member states
during the CAJP meeting, as well as the meeting
report, will be published on the DIL’s website
in due course.
For further information on this matter, please contact the Department of International Law of the Secretariat for Legal Affairs of the OAS +1 202 370 0743..
Photo Gallery of the Presentation
Video of the Presentation of the Department of International Law (DDI)
Additional information about Equal Access to Public Information work can be seen on
For additional information about the Department, please visit
DIL Site |
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