Council of Ministers Regulation No. 428/2018
COUNCIL OF MINISTERS REGULATION TO DETERMINE THE RATE OF FEES FOR SERVICE ON DIFFERENT CATEGORIES OF INFORMATION
Whereas, the freedom of the mass media and access to information Proclamation provides the right of information requesters to obtain information quickly, inexpensively and effortlessly;
Whereas, the need of introducing a uniform working procedure where by public bodies implement the appropriate limit and information access fee cost recovery mechanisms;
Now therefore, This Regulation is issued by the Council of Ministers pursuant to Article 5 of the Definition of Powers and Duties of the Executive Organs of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia Proclamation No.916/2015 and Article 37 of the Freedom of the Mass Media and Access to Information Proclamation No. 590/2008.
1. Short Title
This Regulation may be cited as the “Rate of service Fees Payable for Different Categories of Information Council of Ministers Regulation No.428/ 2018”.
In this Regulation, unless the context requires otherwise:
1/ “Proclamation” means the Freedom of the Mass Media and Access to Information Proclamation No. 590/2008;
2/ the definitions provided for under sub-articles (5) to (8) and sub-article (18) of Article 2 of the Proclamation shall be applicable;
3/“fee notice” means a notice form issued by the public relation officer to inform the information requester the amount of administrative cost required to process the information request;
3. Scope of Application
1/ This Regulation shall apply to all public bodies.
2/ Notwithstanding the provision of sub-article (1) of this Article, these Regulations shall not apply on public bodies that are entrusted by law with the duty of processing and selling information.
ASSESSMENT OF FEE AND MODE OF PAYMENT
4. Fees Notice
If the public relation officer or any assigned employee decides to provide the information, he shall, within 15 days from the receipt of the request, notify the requester the amount of fees to be charged.
5. Assessment of Fee
1/ The amount of fees for accessing information shall be calculated based on the schedule attached with this Regulation.
2/ The amount and the schedule of information access fees referred in sub-article (1) of this Article may, where necessary, be revised every two years.
6. Duration of Payment
1/ The requester of information shall pay the fees within 90 consecutive days from the receipt of the notice issued to him in accordance with Article 4 of this Regulation.
2/ If the requester of the information fails to effect payment pursuant to sub-article (1) of this Article, the public body may not be obliged to provide the information, unless the requester comes up with convincing reason for failing to do so.
3/ Any public body may request the total payment in advance when the requester is with the record of unsettled bill.
7. Advance Payment
Where the fees for accessing the information requested exceed the cost limit and the public relation officer or any assigned employee decides to provide the information, the requester shall, in advance, pay one third of the total fee.
8. Exemption of fees
1/ The following information requesters are exempted from the payment of fees:
a) an individual with annual income of Birr 860( Eight hundred and sixty birr) or less and furnish evidence from the appropriate government bodies;
c) 30 pages of information requested by a journalist;
d) an individual engaged in scientific research who is able to furnish evidence from the appropriate public body;
e) an individual requesting personal information;
f) visually impaired persons
g) any government organ, courts or person requesting information for the purpose of inspection and investigation.
2/ The Institution of the ombudsman may determine by directives other persons, who may be exempted from the payment of information access fee in addition to those referred to under sub-article (1) of this Article.
1/ Fees may be waived on the following grounds:
a) where the information requested enhances the general awareness of the society regarding government activities;
b) where the information requested is available based on duty to publish;
c) where the information requested is likely to contribute to find out a responsible body, individual or group that would be accountable for a failure;
d) where the expense to collect the fees appears to be higher than the administrative cost to be collected.
2/ The public relation officer or any assigned employee shall notify to the requester in writing his decision on a request for waiver within 5 days from the receipt of the request.
10. Collection of Fees
The public relation officer or any assigned employee shall ensure fulfillment of the following conditions before causing collection of fees:
1/ the consistency of calculation rate of the fees and manner of its collection;
2/ the consistency of the existing payment procedure with this Regulation, if any;
3/ that the collection is executed in accordance with the finance system of the government.
11. Supervisory Power
The Institution of the Ombudsman is entrusted with the power and responsibility to supervise the proper implementation of these Regulations and directives issued there under.
12. Power to Issue Directives
The Institution of the Ombudsman may issue directives necessary for the proper implementation of this Regulation.
13. Effective Date
This Regulation shall enter into force on the date of their publication in the Federal Negarit Gazetta.
Done at Addis Ababa, this ______ day of _ 2018
ABIY AHMED (PH.D)
PRIME MINISTER OF THE FEDERAL DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF ETHIOPIA