High Court ruling over lack of jurisdiction to hear Information Commissioner’s decisions appealed with Supreme Court

Attorney General Ibrahim Riffath. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

Attorney General’s Office has appealed High Court’s ruling that it lacks jurisdiction to hear appeals over decisions by the Information Commissioner with the Supreme Court.

The High Court issued the ruling on March 21, in response to an appeal filed by Male’ Water and Sewerage Company (MWSC) over the Information Commissioner’s decision in a case lodged with the Information Commissioner’s Office seeking access to a MWSC audit report.

Attorney General’s Office announced this Thursday that it has filed an appeal over the High Court ruling with the Supreme Court.

Attorney General Ibrahim Riffath had responded to the High Court ruling in March by tweeting that the decision denies the right to appeal.

Right to Information Act states that decisions by the Information Commissioner may be appealed with the High Court.

High Court’s main contention is that the phrasing on the Act.

The High Court said that according to Judicature Act, the court has appellant jurisdiction over decisions by either lower courts and tribunals. The High Court said the Right to Information Act mentions decisions by the “Information Commissioner”, but that the “Information Commissioner” is not a tribunal, and the court therefore does not have the jurisdiction to hear appeals over decisions by the Information Commissioner.