Initiate without delay a transparent procedure of selection of the new Commissioner for Information of Public Importance and Personal Data Protection

12-20-2018.

The mandate of the current Commissioner for Information of Public Importance and Personal Data Protection Rodoljub Šabić will expire on Saturday December 22nd. The procedure of selection of the new Commissioner has not yet been initiated. Civil society organisations devoted to realisation of the rule of law, democracy and civil rights urged yet again the competent Committee for Culture and Information of the Assembly to initiate as soon as possible the procedure of selection of the new Commissioner and publicly proposed well-defined criteria for selection of candidates.

One of the main requests is to establish a competitive process in which interested public shall be able to participate and follow-up. Organisations proposed manners of verification whether the candidates are connected to any political party, whether they have violated the law, professional rules and standards, as well as whether they possess relevant professional knowledge and experience in the area of data protection and access to information of public, and the integrity necessary to perform control and oversight over the work of other state bodies. Moreover, organisations suggested methods aiming to ensure that the process is public, open to all interested citizens and associations and insisted that the Committee ensures a fair competition.

The entire set of criteria for selection of the new Commissioner for Information of Public Importance and Personal Data Protection is  on this link. The proposals were made by Partners for Democratic Change Serbia, Transparency Serbia, Share Foundation, Belgrade Centre for Security Policy (BCBP), Centre for Research, Transparency and Accountability (CRTA), Lawyers’ Committee for Human Rights  (YUCOM), Bureau for Social Research (BIRODI) and Open Society Foundation Serbia.

We would like to remind that the Committee for Culture and Information at the session held on November 26th  refused to consider the initiative for an urgent initiation of a transparent procedure of selection of the new Commissioner signed by 70 civil society organisations, media, business, professional and scientific communities’ representatives. Five members of the Committee voted in favour of the proposal, while the remaining eight abstained from the vote.