Category Archives: executive

Acting upon the Freedom of Information Act

By Naeem Sadiq

In September 2009 I wrote to two  Sindh  government departments seeking harmless information on matters of education and pollution that should anyway be available to all citizens. I was confident that a formal request under the much trumpeted and much ‘seminar’ed  Freedom of Information Act will do the trick.  The law requires a response within 21 days.   When nothing happened for 4 months, in Jan 2010,  I approached the Sindh Ombudsman (as suggested in the law) to ask the concerned departments to do the needful.

After digesting my request for 3 months, the Sindh Ombudsman finally asked the concerned departments (Education and Environmental Protection Agency) to appear and explain why they did not provide the information that had been asked for.  I too was asked to appear.

So I spent the 1st of April (like a fool)  in the Ombudsman’s office, hoping that the real culprits would make an appearance.  Nobody turned up and the helpless  Ombudsman gave a new date of April 6, for all parties to appear again.

On 6th April I wasted  another day waiting in the Ombudsman’s office, but again neither department put in an appearance.

Clearly I was now being given a taste of my own medicine.  The Ombudsman could keep calling.  I could keep appearing.  The departments violating the freedom of information Act could keep not turning up.  Life could keep going on as normal. Continue reading

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Filed under Citizens, civil service, Conservation, Democracy, Education, Environment, executive, Law, Pakistan, Rights, Sindh

Appointment Of Judges – India And Pakistan

 By Yasser Latif Hamdani

In all likelihood, the judicial crisis will be over in the late afternoon today when the Federal Government will withdraw its notification thus burying the basic issue in the crisis.   The heroes to save the day are once again none other than Barrister Aitzaz Ahsan – the great bridge builder- and Prime Minister Gillani who has proved himself to be a statesman.

When divorced from the drama of high politics, there are some legal issues  that need some urgent attention.  First and foremost is the issue of the consultation of Chief Justice being a mandatory provision for the appointment and elevation of the said judges under 177.  The meaning of  consultation is provided under Article 260 where such deliberation is not binding on the president save in matters pertaining to appointment of judiciary.   It may be noted here that this was inserted in the constitution through LFO 2002 by General Pervez Musharraf and therefore ratified under the 17th amendment. Continue reading

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Filed under executive, Judiciary, Justice, Pakistan