Regional Journalists to seek access to withheld information in Strasbourg
The Regional Press Development Institute are preparing an application to the European Court of Human Rights on behalf of the Rivne Journalist Investigation Agency over refusal to provide information about public funding allocated for each official of the Rivne Regional State Administration.
Although Ukrainian legislation – the Public Information Act and the Law on Preventing and Counting Corruption - prohibits concealment of such information, officials often refuse to provide it, claiming that it contains personal data.
The Rivne Journalist Investigation Agency has already achieved a court examination of the unlawful refusals to provide information. In December 2012 the High Administrative Court found the rulings of the Rivne District and Zhytomyr Administrative Court of Appeal regarding the use of taxpayers’ money to fund the municipal newspaper Visti Rivnenshchyny which belongs to the Rivne oblast public. The Agency had sought to find out about spending on the newspaper back in 2011 but the requests for information were turned down. The first two courts refused to consider the case, however the High Administrative Court has now sent the case back for new examination in the same court but by different judges.
It is not quite clear in this case why they are preparing an application to the European Court of Human Rights, however this is what the report says (translator).