HCA Vanadzor summed up the results of information inquiries addressed to state bodies in 2020
HCA Vanadzor sends information inquiries to state, territorial and local self-government bodies to carry out more effective protection of human rights. 2020 stood out by the establishment of an emergency state and then martial law. HCA Vanadzor office continued its activity by observing Covid-19 pandemic prevention rules. During that period, most of the information inquiries were sent in electronic version instead of paper one, which essentially reduced the time periods of sending information inquiries and receiving their responses, as the 7-day period envisaged for postal service was also reduced.
We can record that state organizations, territorial and local self-government bodies mostly responded to information inquiries sent during the emergency state within the terms set by the RA Law “On freedom of information”.
This study carried out by HCA Vanadzor presents the situation of the implementation of the RA Law “On freedom of information” by state and local self-government bodies in 2020.
The collected information is classified as “in time”, “late” and “unresponded”.
The responses received in 5 days in electronic version and in 12 days by postal service are considered to be received in time.
Responses received with breach of the terms set by law or the terms considered reasonable by HCA Vanadzor office are considered to be late.
Inquiries that have not been responded as of the day this report was published are considered unresponded.
In 2020, HCA Vanadzor sent 1301 letters, of which 334 inquiries were addressed to state government, territorial and local self-government bodies. For the sake of comparison, it should be mentioned that in 2019, 1151 letters were sent, 408 of which were information inquiries.
Inquiries were sent to the RA Ministry of Defence (20.06%), territorial and local self-government bodies (12.57%), social and health sector (10.78%). Thus, information inquiries sent to the mentioned spheres amount to 43.41% of the total number of inquiries; whereas, in 2019, 10% and more of the information inquiries were addressed to the RA Prosecutor’s Office with its subdivisions (14.67%), RA Ministry of Defence (11.74%), social and healthcare sector (10.76%), RA Police and their subdivisions (10.27%, territorial and local self-government bodies (10.27%).
60 out of 334 information inquiries sent by HCA Vanadzor were addressed to other structures.We summed up the data received from those structures in line with the terms set by the RA Law on Freedom of Information and recorded that 31 of those state bodies observed the relevant terms.
In 2020, a larger number of timely responses were provided by
✔️RA Police and subdivisions
✔️RA Investigative Committee
✔️RA Academy of Justice
✔️RA Prosecutor General’s Office
✔️RA Ministry of Defence
✔️RA Ministry of Justice
✔️RA Prosecutor’s office and subdivisions
For the sake of comparison, it should be mentioned that in 2019, the majority of responses was provided by the RA Police and its subdivisions, territorial and local self-government bodies, social and health sector structures, RA military commissariats, RA Investigative Committee, RA schools and RA National Security Service.
The following structures are the ones that provided the greatest number of late responses and left information inquiries unresponded in 2020: RA Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs, territorial and local self-government bodies, RA Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sports, RA Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
For the sake of comparison, it should be mentioned that the following structures were the ones that provided late responses and left information inquiries unresponded in 2019: RA Ministry of Defence, structures of the RA justice sector, RA Prosecutor’s office with its subdivisions.
It is noteworthy that the RA Ministry of Defence, RA Prosecutor General’s office, RA Police and its subdivisions provided the largest number of timely responses to HCA Vanadzor information inquiries in 2019 and 2020.Thus, the number of timely responses increased in 2020, while the specific weight of unreceived and late responses reduced.
Summing up, HCA Vanadzor records that in terms of 334 information inquiries sent to state structures, territorial government and local self-government bodies in 2020, 227 inquiries (67,96%) received timely responses, 98 inquiries (29,34%) received late responses, and 9 inquiries (2,69%) were left unresponded.
In 2019, 408 information inquiries were sent to the same structures; 241 inquiries (59,07%) received timely responses, 155 inquiries (37.99%) received late responses, 12 inquiries (2,94%) were left without any response.
The full report is available HERE (in Armenian)
Detailed picture per separate structures is available HERE (in Armenian)