President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih has called on government institutions to dispense information before warning against the possible repercussions that could come out by obstructing the freedom of information.
The President gave an address to the ‘Mahoali’ magazine issued by the Information Commissioner’s Office on the occasion of International Day for Universal Access to Information 2020, celebrated today.
He stressed on the importance of facilitating the freedom of information and stated that it was the responsibility of all state institutions and employees to stop any obstruction of freedom of expression.
While the Constitution stipulated that right, the President said that state institutions should take the initiative on dispensing information.
“Provision of information that everyone should know, before requests for the information are made, should be prioritized by all state institutions.” Said President Solih.
Provision of information regarding state activities by institutions to the public is not a choice for state employees since it was a right of the public, noted the President.
He added that the dispensing of information was a tool against stopping corruption, embezzlement, and other misconduct.
“Hesitation of providing information leads to mistrust in society. Prioritization of dispensing information leads to more transparency.” Said the President.
Freedom of expression and freedom of media as well as the right to information were some of the most important aspects of the President’s address. The President stated that the powers of state originated from the people and remained with the public said the President. The constitutional powers could only be maintained if the rights granted under the same constitution were bestowed to the public.
Respecting the right to information was a responsibility on each and all state employee and the purpose of the Information Commissioner’s Office, an independent state institution established, was to provide these rights to the public, noted the President.