The Ministry of Interior has issued a directive on its social media pages which addressed officials at the ministry and causes to violate freedom of expression and access to information.
The directive which was issued on social media stated some four articles which were signed by Massoud Andarabi, the acting minister of the Interior Affairs.
Nai Supporting Open Media in Afghanistan believes that the directive of posting information has violated the current laws in the country. The first article prevents the Ministry of Interior Affairs’ officials in terms of providing information on various points. For instance, appointment and replacements of officials at the ministry and criticism of the ministry’s leadership are prohibited.
Nai thinks that the dissemination of information on replacement of officials at the Ministry of Interior Affairs or criticism of its leadership is the right of every official at the ministry. This article has not only violated the Media Law but also infringed the Access to Information Act. The second article demonstrates the only one stream of information. Nai believes that this point could be positive but if the information management causes lack of access to important information so it is considered out of law and contrary to the article 50th of Afghanistan’s Constitutional Law. Moreover, the officials at the MoI are prohibited to give interview to media, and this point is entirely against article 34th of constitutional law, unless someone acts against his profession and national interests.
Article third indicates that all required information will be provided based on Access to Information Law by the relevant entities. We think that pursuing law is one of the responsibilities of officials but if the law is implemented according to the military perceptions so it can violate that law.
In the conclusion of the directive, two specific entities are assigned for its imposition and according to Nai the language in this part of directive’s context is prestressing and bullying and it can raise concerns on violation of citizens’ rights, staffs at the Ministry of Interior Affairs.
Nai asks the Ministry of Interior Affairs to review the directive in terms of wording and context according to the current laws in the country and rewrite it. So that it helps us to overcome the concerns in this regard.