From China Media Project:
It was just over a week ago that China’s long-awaited national ordinance on openness of information took effect, mandating “active disclosure” by local governments of a whole range of policy-related information. While some observers have suggested the ordinance could be a historic step forward in bringing about greater government transparency in China, others have questioned the ability and willingness of party leaders to carry out the legislation’s mandates.
Media reports this week suggest we may now have our first test case of citizens using the ordinance to access information about government behavior. According to a report in China’s Legal Daily newspaper, Huang Youjian (黄由俭), Deng Bosong (邓柏松) and three other plaintiffs from Rucheng County (汝城县) in the Hunan city of Chenzhou (郴州) have filed a case in a local court demanding the release of information about the restructuring of the county’s water utility.