Third Committee

Agenda Item 73(b): Promotion and Protection of Human Rights

Intervention by the Republic of Maldives to the Report by the Special Rapporteur on promotion and protection of the rights to freedom of opinion and expression, Mr. David Kaye

United Nations, New York, 22 October 2015


Thank you Distinguished Chairperson,

The Maldives would like to thank the Special Rapporteur of the Secretary General for his report and appreciate his work in carrying out his mandate.

The Maldives enacted a Right to Information Act in January 2014, widening the scope of citizen's right to information. This was another important step towards increasing transparency and accountability, building on to the many steps towards the Governments' commitment to guaranteeing the right of freedom of expression for all citizens, young and old, as enshrined in our Constitution. The Act also provides protection to whistle-blowers as a means to curb corruption or breach of the law. The Maldives fully underscores the necessity of basic protections for effective freedom of expression. Although a lot of progress has been made in this area, including institution of Information Officers in Government agencies and training and public awareness programs, much more work needs to be done on drawing on international best practices.

Is there a standard measure that can be used, in international best practice, to measure when national security concerns will take precedence over information sharing?