The right of access to information in Bosnia and Herzegovina is not adequately protected, since the institutions in charge of overseeing the implementation of laws on freedom of information in BiH do not have strong control mechanisms or the resources to carry out supervision in this area.
This is one of conclusions of policy brief "The right of access to information in BiH: Towards effective institutional design", which analyzes how monitoring and enforcement of laws on freedom of information in BiH has been solved institutionally, as well as weak points of the current system.
As a starting point for this analysis, principles that define the optimal institutional framework for monitoring of the implementation of access to information have been presented, as well as practices in other countries. In addition, relevant institutions for the implementation of laws on freedom of information in Bosnia and Herzegovina have been analyzed, while focus placed on the jurisdiction of these institutions, their role as protectors of the rights of access to information, as well as the necessary preconditions for effective supervision of the implementation of the law.
Based on the main findings, two sets of recommendations for improving the enforcement and oversight of access to information have been formulated. One of the proposals points to improvements within the current institutional set-up, i.e. measures to be taken in order to strengthen the capacity and the role of the Institution of Human Rights Ombudsman in BiH. Second set of recommendations refers to creating a new institutional oversight mechanism - commissioner’s office for protection of freedom of information and personal data in BiH, which would have strong powers to enforce compliance with the law.
The publication is a result of the project Advocacy for Open Government: Supporting the Right to Know in South East Europe", funded by the European Union.