Access to information is cheaper than keeping state secrets, Acces-Info

The State would spend less if it would offer free access to all information and wouldn’t keep some of the state secrets that have already grown old. This is the opinion of the “Acces-Info” Center for Promotion of Freedom of Expression and Access to Information head Vasile Spinei, reports Info-Prim Neo. “We’ve been asking the authorities, for several years now, to publish the documents that have been taken out of secrecy”, stated the Acces-Info head, during the “Right to knowledge – the right to live at home like they live in Europe” public debates. Vasile Spinei says that it makes sense to drop the salary supplements offered to public employees for keeping state secrets. “This supplement is a horrible thing. Some functionaries may say that they classify some documents better, due to this supplement”. Historian Mihai Tasca said that Moldova has State secrets that are kept from 1940, whereas, officially, State secrets shouldn’t be preserved for more than 25 years. According to the historian, if the Law on information access is the society’s “weapon”, then the authorities have made themselves a Law to “defend” them, i.e. the Law on personal data. “Where is the limit to personal data? How much such data is there? In my opinion, there are 3-4 pieces of personal data, not more”, said Mihai Tasca. It was pointed out during the debates that there is an agreement, between Moldovan and Russian intelligence services, to preserve as “state secrets” all documents related to Soviet authorities up to 1990 that can be found on Moldovan archives. The participants to the debates highlighted the fact that Moldova must move towards digitalization, since there is not one archive in the country to preserve information in digital format. The public debates were organized with the support of the German Foundation “Hanns Seidel Stiftung” as part of the “European integration as a national idea with the potential of strengthening Moldovan society” Project.

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