Saturday, December 2, 2023

NGOs terminate agreement with National Security Commission

Five non-governmental organizations have terminated a transparency agreement with the National Security Commission (CNS) due to its “visible disinterest” in making information about public security agencies available to them.

Causa en Común (Common Cause), México Unido Contra la Delincuencia (Mexico United Against Crime), México Evalúa, Observatorio Nacional Ciudadano (National Citizens’ Observatory) and the National Network of Public Security Professionals claim that the Citizens’ Transparency Mechanism, agreed to in 2016, has not led to greater transparency on the part of the CNS as intended.

In a statement issued yesterday, the five organizations said they repeatedly faced bureaucratic hurdles when attempting to gain access to information about internal processes at the Federal Police, which under the transparency agreement they believed they had a right to.

A meeting with National Security Commissioner Renato Sales in November 2017 resulted in a commitment on his part that the CNS would comply with its transparency mechanism obligations but according to the NGOs, nothing changed.

“Given the lack of substantive progress and the visible disinterest of the CNS for the mechanism to operate . . . the participating organizations . . . have decided to terminate the collaboration,” the statement said.

However, the organizations said they are interested in resuming collaboration once the new federal government takes office and implementing a mechanism that “really is effective,” allowing the goals of transparency and accountability to be achieved.

Later yesterday, the CNS rejected the organizations’ opacity claims in its own statement, saying that it provided information when requested about the Federal Police’s budget, recruitment practices, certification processes, protocols and assessment measures.

It added that it has a legal obligation to protect sensitive information whose dissemination could place CNS personnel or processes at risk.

“In no way can it be assumed that the [transparency] mechanism should work to deliver confidential and classified information even when it is for academic or research purposes. The mechanism is governed by privacy policies, the General Law on Transparency and Access to Public Information . . . and other applicable regulations . . .”

Source: Milenio (sp) 

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