As FOI bill gathers dust at home: Casiño chides P-Noy for ‘posturing’ as transparency advocate in New York

Rep. Teddy Casiño today chided Pres. Benigno Aquino III for posturing as an advocate of transparency in New York even as the Freedom of Information (FOI) bill is gathering dust at home.

“Pres. Aquino may have taken the center stage at the Open Government Partnership (OGP), a multilateral initiative supposedly aimed at ensuring transparency in government and the empowerment of citizens in fighting corruption, but do the other members of OGP Steering Committee know that it is P-noy himself who is hampering the enactment of the FOI, a necessary tool for government transparency?” asked the progressive solon.

“It is also ironic that Pres. Aquino relished being part of the Steering Committee and said he is committed to promoting transparency, fostering accountability and combating corruption when he did not even mention the FOI bill in his speech or its status in the Philippine Congress,” he added.

Casiño is principal author of HB 133 or more popularly known as the Freedom of Information Bill which is aimed at institutionalizing and strengthening the Constitutional guarantee to access to information. The measure almost passed in the 14th Congress but was not ratified in Congress when administration congressmen questioned the quorum.

“It is quite sad that the President is saying one thing but doing another. He is not showing the whole picture. He’s credibility will suffer if the FOI bill is not enacted within the year. So my advice to the President is, prioritize the FOI bill, it is about time that he fulfils his promise of transparency and open governance,” ended Casiño. # # #