via Access to information critical in fighting graft March 15, 2014 by Obey Manayiti NewsDay
COMMUNITIES can only play a significant role in exposing corruption if they are well informed and have unhindered access to information, Mutare-based media lawyer David Tandire has said.
Speaking during the handover of the Sakubva information kiosk by Media Institute for Southern Africa-Zimbabwe (MISA-Zimbabwe) on Wednesday, Tandire said corruption tended to thrive in an environment where there was no easy access to information and the media was muzzled.
“If access to public information is denied then we will end up with public institutions run like private institutions,” Tandire said.
“Muzzling of information creates a situation of financial embezzlement and corruption will go unchecked. We need our citizens to be informed so that they contribute meaningfully to public discourses on different important matters as well as making informed decisions both on their lives and the outside world,” he said.
Tandire hailed Misa-Zimbabwe for creating public information kiosks, saying they were key in the dissemination of information.
Speaking at the same event, Misa-Zimbabwe director Nhlanhla Ngwenya said the kiosk would enable the public to access free newspapers and other sources of information.
Ngwenya said only Mutare City Council had embraced the project after other local authorities throughout the country refused to have information kiosks set up in their localities.
The function was attended by Mutare deputy mayor Collen Mukwada.