Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Penang and Selangor pursue FOI (Freedom of Information) Act


The FOI empowers ordinary citizens by allowing them to obtain information from govt as long as national security is not compromised.

Most developed countries have the FOI to ensure that there is competency, transparency, and accountability in govt. Without FOI, govts can release selective and misleading information that lead ordinary citizens to wrong conclusions. Secrecy is often associated with dictatorships and totalitarian govts whose main interest is to control the populace for its own benefit rather than the benefit of ordinary citizens.

In Singapore, instead of FOI, we have the draconian OSA (Official Secrets Act)[Link] which limits the communication of information.

A transparent and open govt has nothing to hide and should be willing to adopt legislation that allows citizens to request for information.


Anonymous said...

Actually there is already freedom of Information (FOI) with the Internet.

Freedom because the gahmen cannot realistically control it.

As for the mainstream media, they can control easily 100% or any way they want. So of course control lah.

But even with the Internet FOI, there is no cause to worry for the PAP. As long as they can make 66% happy. Ultimately this is what really matter.

Anonymous said...

Actually there is already freedom of Information (FOI) with the Internet.

U know that Mr Lucky Tan is happy to use information from mainstream media?

Really. Else u would see him actually doing something. Like raising $$$ for his favored opposition party so that they wont lose election before it even begins.

Btw, PAP has 82 out of 84 seats (>66%).

Anonymous said...

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S&P 1,172.40 -29.86

Anonymous said...

Mr Lucky:

even if there is full freedom of informations, how is that going to benefit Singaporeans?

Conscription(National Service) is violation of Human Rights, can Singaporeans refuse?

The Army could or would be called in, supposedly to bring down the victor(s) and winner(s) in case Oppositions win in an election. And the Result will be called freak. Can the generals and commanders refuse? Will they refuse?

Prices of HDB, Utilities and all else are way beyond reasonable and fair. Can we refuse or boycott??



Anonymous said...

Freedom of Information does not fill stomachs. When you have to slog hard just to survive, the last thing on your mind would be FOI. That is the way to keep Singaporeans in line and docile. Make it hard to make ends meet for the majority and you can control the mass easily. FOI is a luxuary. Unfortunately Singaporeans are too timid to do anything about the lack of this commodity. They are too busy trying to make money to even bother about a trivial like FOI. To control the mass, make it difficult to scratch out a living in one of the most expensive cities in the worls, then just before GE throw them a few crumb and the sheeples will forget all about things like FOI and vote for another 5 more years of PAP. Fools never learn!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

"The FOI empower ordinary citizens by allowing them to obtain any information from govt as long as national security is not compromised."

The key words are: not compromised.

What is or are not compromised which is highly debatable and difficult to agree upon.

Anonymous said...

As long as there is no free press, there will be no freedom of information. Judging by the current ranking in press freedom, we have a long, long way to go.

Anonymous said...

Freedom of Information. More likely further enhancements to the official secrets act. Right now, the MPs and Ministers do not need to declare their assets or any conflict of interest. Soon the assets of the ministers will be protected under the OSA. As it is now, they cannot be investigated by anyone without the approval of the president. If that is a crime, you think the government will allow the public to question how much the PM's wife earned last year. Its state(which is the family) secret for goodness sake

Anonymous said...

Let me ask again; what use or good is Freedom of Information?

One may find my analogy here extreme and i will not dispute your view. I liken freedom of informations to victim of rape. If one is powerless to response to protect oneself and take measures to react and make accountable those responsible in the informations revealed. Or to right whatever wrongs that are exposed from the information.

Oh, it sounds messy, let's make it simple, the rapist bares him(her)self(iformations revealed and exposed) and the victim gets to see every detail of the naked perpetrator, what can the victim do? And do not forget the victim(the one with all the informations regarding the rape) could or will most likely be badly mauled, hurt and harmed.

Without information, one gets curious, with information, one gets hurt and harm spiritually or physically. There are state secrets and there are sinister and dark personal secrets all considered as 'informations'. What good does freedom to such informations provide to the people or the state??