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  • The Bill, to amend the Access to Information Act, is expected to be tabled in Parliament before the end of the 2014/15 legislative year.
  • A mandatory review of the Act was done by a Joint Select Committee, and was approved by the Lower House in 2011
  • The Act, which was passed in 2002, gives Jamaican citizens and individuals across the world the opportunity to access official government documents, while promoting freedom of information.

The Bill, to amend the Access to Information Act, is expected to be tabled in Parliament before the end of the 2014/15 legislative year.
This was disclosed by Minister of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining,

Hon. Phillip Paulwell, during Tuesday’s (September 17) sitting of the House of Representatives.

A mandatory review of the Act was done by a Joint Select Committee, and was approved by the Lower House in 2011.

Mr. Paulwell explained that the delay in submitting the Bill, is due primarily to assistance received by Jamaica to review the legislation under the International Telecommunication Union and European Union (EU)-funded ‘Enhancing Competitiveness in the Caribbean Through the Harmonization of Information Communication Policies, Legislation and Regulatory Procedures (HIPCAR)’ Project.

“In this regard, an international expert on access to information/freedom of information reviewed the recommendations of the Joint Select Committee, and utilizing the HIPCAR model law on Access to Public Information, as well as regional and international best practices, prepared a report, as well as, drafting instructions to amend the Access to Information Act, and draft Access to Information Bill,” he stated.

Mr. Paulwell added that these deliverables will inform the preparation of a Cabinet Submission seeking approval for the preparation of the Access to Information (Amendment) Bill by the Chief Parliamentary Counsel.

The Act, which was passed in 2002, gives Jamaican citizens and individuals across the world the opportunity to access official government documents, while promoting freedom of information.

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