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Statistics on the Code on Access to Information

     The Government received a total of 644 requests for information under the Code on Access to Information in the fourth quarter of 2011, a spokesman for the Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Bureau said today (February 9).

     The total number of requests received since the introduction of the Code in March 1995 and up to the end of December 2011 amounted to 32,700. Of these, 1,856 requests were subsequently withdrawn by the requestors and 1,355 requests covered cases in which the bureaux/departments concerned did not hold the requested information. As at December 31, 2011, 70 requests were still being processed by bureaux and departments.

     Among the 29,419 requests which covered information held by bureaux/departments and which the bureaux/departments had responded to, 28,716 requests (98 per cent) were met, either in full (28,050 requests) or in part (666 requests), and 703 requests (2 per cent) were refused.

     Any member of the public who is dissatisfied with the response of a bureau/department under the Code may request that the matter be reviewed. He or she may also lodge a complaint with the Ombudsman.

     In the fourth quarter of 2011, the Ombudsman received three complaints relating to requests for information.
     The Ombudsman completed investigation of 10 complaint cases in this quarter. Of these 10 complaint cases, six were concluded and settled after inquiries by the Ombudsman. The Ombudsman discontinued investigation into three other cases and did not undertake investigation into one case having considered the circumstances of the cases. As at December 31, 2011, the Ombudsman was still investigating two complaint cases.

     "The statistics show that government bureaux and departments have been complying with the Code to the general satisfaction of members of the public," the spokesman said.

Ends/Thursday, February 9, 2012