Access to Information Law in Guatemala

Las week the session of Congress introduced a bill called the Access to Public Information Law.

Monday, June 16, 2008

In the midst of the turbulance caused by the transparency scandals in the Legislature, the law could not have arrived at a better time. Now that the deputies are "washing their faces" before the citizens they are starting to approve this initiative.
The Constitution contemplates free access to public information but, typical of public officials, they did not pay attention to citizen requirements, especially those of the national press.
In a bulletin prepared for the National Center of Economic Research, José Reúl González Merlo says, "In an opaque organization like the National Congress, it seems strange to publish a law that requires improved transparency (with heavy fines and prison terms for offenders). However, in the next few days we'll see if this becomes a reality."

More on this topic

Honduras: Delay in Enforcement of Official Secrets Act

January 2014

Congress has for the moment suspended the enactment of the controversial law approved a few days ago.

The Honduran Congress has for the moment suspended the much opposed law which was believed to be unconstitutional and it has sent it to a special committee for review and definition on whether it contradicts the Law on Access to Information.

Opposition to Secrecy Law in Honduras

January 2014

The Secrecy Act gives power to the owners of institutions to declare secret any information which according to its criteria needs to be hidden.

The Official Secrets and Classification of Public Information Act, which was approved last Wednesday, will be contested through a constitutional case as it is considered to violate citizens right to know how public funds are managed.

Costa Rica and El Salvador the only ones without Public Information Access Law

September 2008

Following the adoption in Guatemala of the Law on Public Information Access, El Salvador and Costa Rica are the only ones in the isthmus that lack a similar law.

The Salvadoran Foundation for Economic and Social Development (FUSADES) presented yesterday its draft law on transparency and access to public information.

Guatemalan Congress approves Public Information Access Law

September 2008

The law, which regulates access to information publicly administered information, will come into effect 180 days after it is published.

The regulations guarantee the people the right to request and access government information.
Public information is defined to include: budget reports, deposit of public funds, usufruct concessions and list of works in progress, etc.

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