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Afghan journalists facing challenges in access to information

AT News Report

KABUL: The International Day for the Universal Access to Information was marked Wednesday in Kabul amid dozens of complaints made by journalists and media runners about many challenges they are facing in access to information.

Reporters say that government officials do not share timely information with them and keep them in an information vacuum.

“Sometime reporters are disgraced and even face violence by officials when they insist for on time information. It is good that we have law, but it is hard to implement it,” said Seddiqollah Tawhidi, head of lawsuit committee for reporters.

Journalists say of carelessness of government officials, adding that even government websites are not updated to get information.

Mortaza Hashemian, a journalist working for the Radio Liberty, said that some government organs usually spare to provide information to journalists on important issues.

“The government spokesmen who should give us information, are not available. If they are available, they do not give us necessary information,” said Hashemian.

The United Nations declared September 28 as the International Day for Universal Access to Information for the first time in 2016. The day was marked late this year in Afghanistan as Afghans went to polling sites to vote in the presidential election of that day.

The commission of access to information, however, says that the government had made important steps regarding information, while admitting shortages.

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