OIA report on Govt to be released

  • 08/12/2015

The long-awaited report on the way Government departments respond to Official Information Act requests is about to be released.

Chief Ombudsman Dame Beverley Wakem began the review at the end of last year after concerns were raised about delays in the release of information to the media.

She has investigated allegations of deliberate stalling when ministers or their departments didn't want damaging reports published.

Dame Beverley last week gave an indication of her conclusions when she told a parliamentary committee she hadn't discovered any worrying trends.

"Largely there is nothing that is malicious, nothing that is deliberate," she told the committee.

"I think it's more about process, practice and policy than it is about anything malevolent."

Dame Beverley said delays were often caused by the volume of requests and the processes within each agency for dealing with them.

The release of her report today coincides with her departure.

Her term ends on Friday, when she will be replaced by Judge Peter Boshier.

Dame Beverley has been an ombudsman since 2005 and chief ombudsman since 2007.