The Promotion of Access to Information Act 2 of 2000 (South African Legislation)
The Promotion of Access to Information Act 2 of 2000 (PAIA) creates a framework for the right of access information (as enshrined in section 32 of the Constitution). The purpose of PAIA is to promote a culture of transparency, accountability and good governance in the private (and public) sectors. PAIA places specific compliance requirements on the private sector (and state institutions).
PAIA gives a requester the right to lodge a request for information with the information officer (head) of a private body.
• A private body is defined as follows in PAIA:
“(a) a natural person who carries or has carried on any trade, business or profession, but only in such capacity;
(b) a partnership which carries or has carried on any trade, business or profession; or
(c) any former or existing juristic person”
• PAIA defines the head of a private body as:
“the chief executive officer or equivalent officer of the juristic person or any person duly authorized by that office….”
To comply with section 51 of PAIA, the head of a private body must:
• compile a section 51 manual – a roadmap to accessing information from the company (Our manual can be downloaded from this link – Section 51 MANUAL – FITBOX (PTY) LTD)
• effect material changes, if any, each time these occur and resubmit the manual to the SAHRC
• make the manual available as prescribed in PAIA at the company offices and on their website;
• must annex a prescribed request form C to the manual and also make request forms available on the website and at the company’s premises;
• after compilation, the manual must be signed by the head of your organisation (initialled on every page and a full signature on the last page)
• submit the manual to the SAHRC