Fesmedia Africa and partners offer sponsored Right to Information courses for Civil Society /Journalists and Government/Public Officials
Online Courses |
To strengthen Access to Information (ATI) and support the RTI agenda in Africa, fesmedia Africa in partnership with the Africa Freedom of Information Centre (AFIC), the Centre for Law in Democracy (CLD) and fraycollege developed the following online courses:
- RTI Civil Society and Journalists (Demand Side)
- RTI for Government / Public Officials (Supply Side)
The RTI for Civil Society and Journalists course is an introduction to the right of individuals to access information held by public officials. It is aimed at African civil society and journalists or “demand side” actors, to build their capacities to take full advantage of the right to information, in accordance with national legislation and international frameworks on this right. The RTI for Government / Public Officials online course aims to build the capacities of African public officials who are tasked with implementing RTI laws, particularly those who are involved in receiving, processing and responding to RTI requests, as well as oversight of such requests.
The sponsored courses contain reading materials, videos, games, quizzes, additional resources, and the opportunity to engage with expert moderators and fellow course participants. Participants need 3-5 hours per module and have a maximum of four weeks to complete the course and receive a certificate of completion.
The next intakes are scheduled as follow:
- 13 September 2021- RTI for Government / Public Officials (Supply Side)
- 18 October 2021- RTI Civil Society and Journalists (Demand Side)
- 15 November 2021- RTI for Government / Public Officials (Supply Side)
Access to information (ATI) is a fundamental human right protected by Article 9 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR), Article 19 of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights (UDHR) and Article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR). This inalienable right gives citizen the prerogative to ask for and receive, information held by public organisations and bodies, thereby allowing them to participate in democratic processes and make informed contributions to civic dialogue. Similarly, Goal 16 of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development recognizes public access to information and the protection of fundamental freedoms as intrinsic ingredients to promoting just, peaceful and inclusive societies.
Civil Society actors and journalists play a central role in ensuring that citizens have access to critical information pertaining governance, public affairs and other democratic processes. These important players need knowledge of ATI/RTI laws in their countries and international frameworks and standards governing RTI, and how to make use of them, in order to make information requests on annual budgets, procurement processes, contracts, performance reports and other information of public interest. Citizens engage in meaningful public dialogue and participate from a well-informed stand point when journalists and civil society actors make successful information request from public institutions and disseminate factual and verified information.
Governments in Africa are encouraged to promote the Right to Information (RTI) by enacting and implementing ATI laws in alignment with the ACHPR which guarantees individuals the right to receive information as well as the right to express and disseminate information. Effective implementation of ATI/RTI laws undoubtedly yields benefits for governments. RTI promotes good governance, transparency and accountability for public office bearers. It is argued by RTI scholars and experts that proactive disclosure of public information by government and public officials facilitates the building of trust in governments among citizens and combating of corruption and promotion of effective and efficient governance.
Prospective participants are invited to visit https://fesmedia.scholarlms.com/ and fill in a registration form. The system will send automatic notifications when the courses are open for enrollment, a few days before the start date.
For more information, please write to [email protected]