Every citizen now able to look public authorities in the cards
An electronic public record database for the civil service (OEP) is launched today. This will be as the first of its kind in the world.
“From this day on everyone is able to get access to the documents of the central civil service. Until now, only journalists had the right to do so. OEP is democracy and openness in practice,” Minister Rigmor Aasrud says.
All documents sent from ministries, directorates and state agencies are journaled in public files. On the OEP it is now possible to access the public records database and make searches in the public journals. If one finds something of interest , one may easily require the original document in question.
“Openness depends on accessibility. With the OEP, experts as well as beginners may easily obtain an overview and insight into what the civil service is doing. For many years, we have seen how important access to public post journals is for the press’ ability to pursue critical journalism. It is my hope that the OEP becomes a tool for democracy and citizen participation,” Minister Aasrud says.
The possibility to obtain access to public documents has existed for some time, but until now the precondition was that one had knowledge of a certain case. Journalists only have been able to have a general overview of cases being sent to and from the ministries.
“With the OEP, everyone is granted the access that until now, only journalists were able to enjoy. In addition, more public enterprises are making their post journals accessible,” the minister says.
By the date of the launching, May 18, all ministries, the Prime Minister’s office and a number of state enterprises are participating in the OEP. Several enterprises are going to be included as soon as they are ready to participate. The agency for Public Management and eGovernment (Difi) carries the management responsibility for the service. The Ministry of government administration and reform has been responsible for the development of the OEP.