Journalist lost lawsuit against Palytsia's Fund
On June 27, Volynskyi district administrative court refused to satisfy the claim of journalist Iryna Musiy against the charity fund “Ihor Palytsia Fund "Tilky Razom"”, which the journalist was suing due to its refusal to provide information about its financial reports, VolynPost reports.
As the media outlet informs, during the litigation it was clarified that the fund did not provide financial information on request because the fund did not identify the report on incomes and use of expenses "financial reports," which the journalist requested.
The journalist said that she sent a request for information in February of 2017. She asked to provide financial reports about money received by the Fund in 2014-16. Yet, in March, she received a reply from the Fund informing her that they would need time to prepare such a large volume of information. The journalist emphasized that they did not refuse to provide her the information then. Later, in April, the Fund sent her another reply, which claimed that the Fund is not a legal administrator of the public information the journalist requested.
As to why this information was important, Musiy said that according to the information of the network OPORA and movement "Chesno", the Fund’s money was used to bribe voters. The journalist wanted to either confirm or contest these claims.
The founder of the Fund is high official Ihor Palytsia, so the public interest in his funds is quite justified, the journalist argued. She had to address the issue of "public interest" as the response of the Fund claimed that the information requested is "of no interest to the public".
The litigation was focused on the formal basis for the denied request - that is, what "financial reporting" really is. The Fund's attorney claimed that the sort of documents that were requested were never prepared or filed by the Fund to anyone. In the end, although the judge was not convinced by the arguments, she resolved to deny the claim.