The commissioner for access to information of public importance and personal data protection, Milan Marinovic, said on April 1 that it could be said that the state institutions and bodies were more closed to the citizens, that getting information from them was more difficult, which was why those seeking information more frequently complained to the institution of the Commissioner.
According to the institution's report for 2021, the number of complaints relative to 2020 increased by 36 percent and totaled 5,181.
Marinovic told daily Danas that this may have been a consequence of the fact that 2020 had been "special," i.e. that there had been fewer complaints because of the state of emergency. "A second factor is that those requesting information are increasingly recognizing the institution of the Commissioner as someone they can address to get information," said Marinovic.
He went on to say that in 2022 institutions would be more ready to provide information because after amendments to the Law on Free Access to Information the Commissioner was able to hand down fines.
"Now there is practically the option of penalty and we will hand down fines, you can be sure of that. That will lead a certain circle of governing bodies to act in line with the commissioner's decision out of fear of fines," he said.