JL: Public Should Know Who's Not Paying Rent for State-Owned Apartments

By 5 February 2022
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ZAGREB, 5 Feb 2022  - The Personal Data Protection Agency has stated that public interest is more important than the protection of personal details of politicians living in state-owned apartments, while state institutions withhold such information citing the GDPR, the Jutarnji List daily wrote on Saturday.

Gathering information for a story on the use of state-owned apartments by state officials, the newspaper has been denied information on the spending of taxpayers' money for this purpose, with the state authorities citing the GDPR or the EU General Data Protection Regulation.

The relevant government departments, Parliament and the Državne Nekretnine state property management company refused to reveal the names of office holders whose rent is paid from the budget and which ministers, state secretaries and members of Parliament are behind with utility bills and rent.

That's why Jutarnji List asked the Personal Data Protection Agency whether Državne Nekretnine is allowed to withhold such information.

"From the point of view of personal data protection, the right to personal data protection does not seem to prevail in this case and the information on the liabilities of state officials for the rental of state-owned apartments - the name of the official and the total amount owed - can be provided," the Agency said.

The Agency noted that the right to personal data protection is not an absolute right and should be balanced with other basic rights in accordance with the principle of proportionality, and one such right is the right of access to information, Jutarnji List said.