Africa lags behind other regions around the world in granting citizens the right to information. With 53 African countries, only 6 have right-to-information laws. However, several of these laws have not been implemented, and at least one actually restricts access to information. A large number of African countries, such as Nigeria, Ghana, Sierra Leone, Cameroon, Rwanda, Kenya, and Tanzania, have struggled for more than a decade to adopt such legislation without much success. Even South Africa, a model of implementation, faces challenges on transparency and accountability.
Advocates in the region have been strategizing on how to reinvigorate transparency campaigns and generate momentum.
The panel will discuss the right-to-information movement in Africa, focusing on the major challenges, recent developments, and options moving forward.
- Abdul Tejan-Cole, Regional Director for Africa, the Open Society Foundations (moderator)
- Agnes Ebo'o, Executive Director, the Citizens Governance Initiatives in Cameroon; Board Member, the Africa Freedom of Information Center
- Mukelani Dimba, Executive Director, the Open Democracy Advice Center in South Africa; Chair of the Board of the Africa Freedom of Information Center
- Maxwell Kadiri, Associate Legal Officer, Open Society Justice Initiative
Lunch will be served.