18 March 2021

New Budget Framework Law under discussion

Proposta Lei Enkuadramentu Orsamentu foun iha hela diskusaun
Tetum tuir mai
In December 2020 and January 2021, the Council of Ministers approved a proposed new Law on the Framework for the General State Budget and Public Financial Management (also Portuguese). In early February, they sent it to Parliament for enactment. The proposed new law would replace Law No 13/2009 on Budget and Financial Management (as amended in 2011 and 2013) (also Portuguese) which spells out the processes for developing, enacting, executing and auditing the General State Budget.

The proposed law learns lessons from years of experience with the current system, as well as outside critiques by PEFA (Public Expenditure and Financial Accountability Assessment), the Open Budget Survey and others.

National Parliament's Committee C (Public Finances) is holding hearings on the proposal beginning on 24 March, and they have invited the NGO Forum to a hearing on 9 April. These hearings are for initial appreciation of the proposed law in generality, and it is unclear when it will be debated in plenary. The proposed law says it will be enacted in time to apply to the processes of executing the 2021 State Budget and developing the 2022 State Budget (which begins before May 2021), but this seems unrealistic.

La'o Hamutuk will continue to analyze the proposal and welcomes suggestions and comments from all sources.  We will update this blog article as more information and documents become available.

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Fulan Dezembru 2020 no Janeiru 2021 Konsellu Ministru aprova proposta lei foun ida, kona-ba Enkuadramentu Orsamentu Jerál Estadu no Jestaun Finansa Públiku (Ingles ka Portugés). Inísiu Fevreiru sira haruka ba Parlamentu Nasional atu aprova. Proposta lei ida ne’e sei substitui Lei Nu. 13/2009 (hanesan altera iha 2011 no 2013) (Ingles ka Portugés), ida ne’ebé deskreve prosesu atu kria, aprova, ezekuta no halo audit ba Orsamentu Jerál Estadu (OJE).

Proposta lei ne’e aprende husi esperiénsia tinan barak ho sistema atuál, nomos komentáriu sira husi PEFA (Public Expenditure and Financial Accountability Assessment), Open Budget Survey no sira seluk. 

Komisaun C Parlamentu Nasional (Komisaun Finansa Públiku) sei realiza audiénsia kona-ba proposta lei ida ne’e, hahú iha dia 24 Marsu, sira konvida ona NGO Forum atu aprezenta iha audiénsia iha dia 9 Abril 2021. Audiénsia sira ne’e nudár apresiasaun inisiál ba proposta lei ne’e iha jeneralidade, no ita seidauk hatene bainhira mak sei diskute iha plenária. Proposta lei ne’e hateten, sei aprova kedas atu uza durante ezekusaun Orsamentu Jerál Estadu 2021 no dezenvolve ba elaborasaun Orsamentu Jerál Estadu 2022 (atu komesa antes Maiu 2021), maibé karik la realistíku. 

La’o Hamutuk sei kontinua analiza ba proposta lei ida ne’e no simu sujestaun sira husi parte hotu. Ami sei atualiza artigu blog ho informasaun no dokumentu sira bainhira iha.

14 March 2021

Identidade Úniku (UID) hahú halo konsultasaun

  Link to this blog in English  

 Iha Janeiru 2021, ekipa tékniku husi Instituisaun Públiku Teknolojia no Informasaun Timor-Leste “TIC Timor” fahe ezbosu Planu estratéjia kona-ba sistema Identidade Úniku (UID) ho konsultasaun limitadu.  Maske La’o Hamutuk hola parte iha prosesu konsultasaun ne’e, TIC husu ami atu labele fahe ezbosu planu ba públiku. Presidensia Konsellu Ministru konvida La’o Hamutuk no organizasaun seluk hodi partisipa konsultasaun públiku iha loron 19 Fevreiru, no ami kontinua ho hakerek submisaun.  TIC responde ho karta detalladu, maibé sira husu ami atu la publika sira nia resposta iha internet.

Pontu importante husi La’o Hamutuk nia submisaun mak: 

  • Kualkér sistema identifikasaun tenke respeita privasidade, liberdade espresaun no informasaun, inklui direitu sira seluk ne’ebé garantia husi Konstituisaun RDTL no tratadu internasionál direitu umanus. Tenke sér iha konsultasaun públiku ne’ebé luan, no sistema ne’e (sei iha) tenkesér estabelese liuhosi Lei Parlamentár.

  • Medidas efetivu tenke asegura katak kolesaun dadus hotu seguru, ne’e katak hacker no mós ema seluk ne’ebé laiha autorizasaun sei labele lee no modifika dadus sira ne’e. Tenke respeita ema nia privasidade, dadus biometriku, no dadus sira seluk iha sistema UID labele liga ho informasaun husi posting iha Facebook, atividade telemovel, GPS ou fonte seluk hodi viola ema nia privasidade no fornese lukru ba kompañia sira.

  • Relembra dezafiu atu mantén rede internet no sistema dadus iha Timor-Leste, ami preokupa katak asesu ba servisu sira ligadu ba iha sistema ne’e bele problema sei kuandu sistema UID ne’e rasik hasoru fallansu iha nia ekipamentu, software erru, falta eletrisidade ou internet ou interrupsaun sira seluk. Sistema ID ho teknolojia mínimu, hanesan kartaun eleitorál, ne’e sei konfiavel liu iha kontextu atuál Timor-Leste nian.

  • Povu Timor-Leste hatene husi sira nia esperiénsia pesoál oinsá moris iha regime koloniál no okupasaun nia okos ne’ebé oprime nia povu. Ohin loron, povu Timor-Leste moris iha sistema demokrasia nia laran ho respeita direitu umanus no lideransa sira iha intensaun di’ak ukun tuir estadu de direitu. Maske nune’e, hanesan esperiénsia Myanmar agora ne’ebé hatudu hela, sei la hanesan ne’e beibeik. Ami preokupa katak sistema hanesan ne’e bele fó oportunidade ba represaun ne’ebé fasil no efetivu liu.

  • Povu barak, espesífiku iha area rural, seidauk iha koñesimentu di’ak kona-ba liafuan no konseitu tékniku no jurídiku ne’ebé sai baze ba implementasaun sistema UID. Sira nia direitu ba privasidade no konsentimentu voluntáriu tenke hetan protesaun.

  • Bainhira povu hatene katak estadu iha kapasidade atu liga sira nia komportamentu personal ho asesu ba servisu públiku, bele hamenus sira nia vontade atu koopera no onestu ba census no survey sira seluk ne’ebé bele ajuda autoridade sira rekolla faktu hodi orienta formula polítika.

  • Konkluzaun, ami fiar katak risku husi projetu boot liu duke nia benefísiu ba povu no husu Governu atu buka forma seluk hodi hadi’ak jestaun dadus ne’ebé laiha poténsia atu ameasa direitu no nesesidade povu nian.

Consultations begin on Unique Identity System (UID)

 Liga ba blog ida ne'e iha Tetum

In January 2021, a technical team from Timor-Leste's Information and Communications Technology Agency "TIC Timor" circulated a draft Strategic Plan for a Unique Identifier (UID) system for limited consultation. Although La'o Hamutuk was included in this process, TIC has asked us not to circulate the draft plan more widely. The Presidency of the Council of Ministers invited La'o Hamutuk and others to a public consultation on 19 February, and we followed up with a written submission (Tetum). TIC replied with a detailed written response, but they have asked us not to put it online.

The main points of La'o Hamutuk's submission are:

  • Any identification system must respect privacy, freedom of expression and information, and other rights guaranteed by Timor-Leste's Constitution and international human rights conventions. There should be wide public consultation, and the system (if any) should be established by Parliamentary law.

  • Effective measures must ensure that all data collected is secure, and that hackers and other unauthorized people will not be able to read or modify it. People's privacy must be respected, and the biometric and other data in the UID system should not be combined with information from Facebook postings, telemobile activities, GPS or other sources to violate people's privacy or provide profits for companies.

  • Given the challenges of maintaining reliable internet and data systems in Timor-Leste, we are concerned that access to services linked to this system may be problematic when the UID system itself experiences equipment failure, software errors, power or internet outages or other disruptions. A lower-tech ID system, such as physical electoral cards, may be more reliable in Timor-Leste's current context.

  • Timor-Leste's people know from personal experience what it is like to live under colonial and occupation regimes that oppress its people. Today, people in Timor-Leste live under a democratic system which respects human rights and where well-intentioned leaders govern under the rule of law. However, as Myanmar's current experience demonstrates, this may not always be the case. We are concerned that a system like this could make oppression easier and more effective.

  • Many people, especially in rural areas, do not yet have good understanding of technical and legal words and concepts underlying the implementation of the UID system. Their rights of privacy and voluntary consent must be protected.

  • When people know that the state has the capacity to link their personal behavior with access to public services, they may be less willing to cooperate fully and honestly with the Census and other surveys which help authorities gather facts to guide policy-making.

  • In conclusion, we believe that the risks of this project outweigh its benefits for our people, and ask the Government to find other ways to improve its data management which do not potentially threaten people's rights and needs.