President Abdulla Yameen has established the Office of the Information Commissioner as per the landmark Right to Information Act (RTI).
The Act, ratified in January, came into force on Saturday, July 12.
Yameen has nominated former Progressive Party of the Maldives MP Abdul Azeez Jamal Abu Bakr for the position in June.
According to the RTI Act, the People’s Majlis must approve an Information Commissioner within 30 days of the act’s enforcement.
The commissioner’s tenure is five years and has the power enforce a fine on information officers who deliberately refuse access to information. Such a fine may not exceed MVR5000 (US$324).
The commissioner may also fine any individual who destroys requested information, obstructs a public authority or the Information Officer’s from providing access to information. Such a fine may not exceed MVR25,000 (US$ 1621).