The Right to Information Commission (RTI) pursuant to an appeal made to it has recommended presenting draft laws before the public in advance and before the Bill is gazetted.
The Commission has made this observation in its order related to an RTI appeal requesting the draft legislation on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, from the Social Empowerment, Welfare and Kandyan Heritage Ministry.
“In many countries in the region and globally, draft laws are required to be presented before the public in advance and before the Bill is gazetted, in order to obtain public feedback on its contents which is a beneficial process leading to public consensus around the framing of legislation,” the Commission said concluding the appeal.
The Commission highlighted that the definition of “information” in the Right to Information Act of Sri Lanka expressly includes ‘draft legislation’ within its ambit.
The appeal had been filed by Dr. Mario Gomez on December 5, 2017. Gomez had requested a copy of the most recent version of the draft law on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (in Sinhala, Tamil, English, and braille if available) and the current status of the draft law.