Information is oxygen to democracy.

To enhance public support for early passage and implementation of Right to Information (RTI) Act in Sindh, we are supporting the largest and oldest journalist association in Pakistan – the ‘Council of Pakistan Newspapers Editors’ (CPNE). It is the biggest representative platform of professional editors and journalists from print and electronic media that was established in 1957.

The 500+-member organization is a registered, voluntary, nonprofit body with the mission to promote and protect human rights particularly right to access information and expression. Hence, at Pakistan Centre for Development Communication (PCDC), we believe that it is about time for civil society organizations and media to come together and demand for more access to information.

CPNE is implementing the ‘Enhancing Demand for RTI Laws by Media Capacity Building Project’ in Sind with support from USAID, to strengthen accountability and transparency mechanisms in the province. Under this project, CPNE is providing training to senior editors, journalists and civil society representatives to objectively portray RTI issues, improve understanding of challenges, raise voice and generate support for an enabling information-centric environment.

The project is also mobilizing large number of youth to act as watchdogs and advocate for citizen’s right to information. Through research, the project would generate new knowledge about ground realities and critically analyze existing mechanisms and advocate for reforms where necessary.

The project will also raise awareness among public regarding article 19-A and strengthen citizens’ voice against corruption.

For more than five decades, CPNE has been mobilizing the society to demand universal access to information. However, it is for the first time a focused, concerted effort has been made in this regard with participation from other civil society organizations and media groups.

PCDC is offering comprehensive technical support and advice to CPNE to make sure that this project becomes a bridge among people of diverse opinions and interests in the province. We will keep you updated about the project. You are most welcome to join this important initiative.