Cabinet gives the nod to Right to Information and National Audit draft bills

Friday, 24 April 2015 01:40 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Cabinet yesterday gave its nod of approval to proposals by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe to present as urgent bills, drafts of the Right to Information (RTI) and the National Audit Bills to Parliament. Both draft bills were a part of crucial election pledges made under the 100-day program as part of a bid to create greater transparency and accountability within Government. The draft Audit Bill is aimed at providing the right for any citizen to focus the attention of the Auditor General on any matter while also specifying several new procedures for the Auditor General to follow when investigating such matters and making reports to Parliament. Additionally, the draft bill also provides for the establishment of an Audit Service Commission to be appointed by the President. Notably, the office of the Auditor General’s Department will cease to be in operation once the proposed Act comes into operation. Meanwhile, the proposed Right to Information bill is anticipated to imbue all Sri Lankan citizens with the right to obtain information that exists in state institutions, and information that exists under its control or its custody while also setting forth numerous exceptions to this right.