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Vargas optimistic FOI will become law

  • Written by Ryan Ponce Pacpaco
  • Published in Nation
  • Read: 284

A QUEZON City congressman yesterday lauded President Rodrigo “Rody” Duterte’s signing of the executive order allowing the implementation of the Freedom of Information Act (FOI).

Rep. Alfredo Vargas III expressed elation over the signing stating the President jump-started the unending crusade for government transparency.
“I am very happy with the promptness and urgency that our President has pushed for the FOI, even if just at the executive level,” Vargas said.
In line with this, Vargas filed House Bill No. 75 or the “People’s Freedom of Information Act.”
Vargas expressed hope that a comprehensive FOI Act will strengthen active engagement and participation of all citizens in decision-making, thus promoting a culture of democracy, transparency, accountability, and good governance.
The bill provides every Filipino citizen with the right to be given access to any record under the control of a government agency upon request.
Vargas said in turn, all government agencies and public officials are responsible in making government information available for public scrutiny, copying and reproduction. In case of denial, the bill also provides remedies to the requesting party.
“Knowing we have the President’s support in enacting this bill gives us encouragement and optimism that the FOI will finally become a law.
This is a historic time for every Filipino who has fought for transparency in government,” Vargas stressed.