The Federal Government on Tuesday in Abuja restated its commitment to strengthen democracy and good governance through the implementation of the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, stated government’s position in a message to mark the 2016 World Press Freedom Day.
In the message made available to newsmen, the minister described the Act, as a necessary instrument in the fight against corruption and promoting transparency in governance.
“We are indeed in a very interesting period, which calls for full support and use of the FOI Act and which recognises the citizen’s right to know, promote war against corruption and sustain economic development.
“If activities of public institutions are subjected to scrutiny, it will be easier to measure their efforts against their goals and our expectations,” he said.
He said that government had taken a bold step further in not just guaranteeing freedom of expression but creating access to information.
Mohammed said that, if well utilised, the FOI Act would offer citizens a sense of involvement, belonging and fulfillment.
“It will go a long way in entrenching transparency, which will in turn help curb corruption, promote accountability, good governance, rule of law and service delivery in public office,’’ he said.
The minister observed that for democracy to be entrenched, the culture of transparency and accountability must permeate all the strata of government.
Mohammed commended the media for remaining resolute in the pursuit of liberty, social justice, equality and democracy.
He assured that the government would continue to create the enabling environment for the media to thrive.
The theme of this year’s World Press Freedom Day is “Access to Information and Fundamental Freedoms: This Is Your Right.’’