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Interior Ministry, police receive anti-prize

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Prague, Sept 29 (CTK) – The Czech Interior Ministry and police command were awarded the main anti-prize in the competition for the willingness of the authorities to provide information, the organising Open Society told journalists on Thursday.

The anti-prize was bestowed on them due to their “chaotic provision of information on the police reform,” the organisers said.

The best positive decoration was given to the north Bohemian town of Decin for allowing the public take part in its decision-making, including the planning of a motorway section.

Speaking on behalf of the organisers, Oldrich Kuzilek said at first, the police command had refused to give any information on the police reshuffle, including the merger of police elite units.

Subsequently, it only released minimum information on the reform, which was also criticised by the ANO movement, a part of the coalition government.

Kuzilek said the steps taken by the police and the Interior Ministry clashed with the duty “to inform the public in an adequate way,” imposed by the law.

The anti-prize for reluctance to provide information was also given to the CEZ national power company because it refused to comply with a request for the data under the free access to information law, although the Supreme Administrative Court decided that it should do so.

The Czech parliament received the anti-prize of the public for the “gag law,” under which companies, including those from the media sphere, can be convicted of slander. This can be punished by a 20-year ban on their activities or even by their closure.

A negative award also went to the Institute of Health Information and Statistics for having refused to release information on births.

A positive mark was given to the Office for Government Representation in Property Affairs for having released the data on the property held by the state and its use and to the national open data coordinator, Michal Kuban.

The jury also gave an award to the Pirates’ deputy group in the Prague assembly, the town hall of Lanskroun, east Bohemia, and Lukas Svoboda for the web, thanks to which one can easily track down documents from 1200 town halls according to their addresses.

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