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Statistics on Code on Access to Information

     The Government received a total of 1,048 requests for information under the Code on Access to Information in the first quarter of 2013, a spokesman for the Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Bureau said today (June 10).

     The total number of requests received since the introduction of the Code in March 1995 and up to the end of March 2013 amounted to 36,844. Of these, 2,078 requests were subsequently withdrawn by the requestors and 1,597 requests covered cases in which the bureaux/departments concerned did not hold the requested information. As at March 31, 2013, 87 requests were still being processed by bureaux and departments.

     Among the 33,082 requests which covered information held by bureaux/departments and which the bureaux/departments had responded to, 32,303 requests (97.6 per cent) were met, either in full (31,574 requests) or in part (729 requests), and 779 requests (2.4 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 first quarter of 2013, the Ombudsman received 17 complaints relating to requests for information.

     The Ombudsman completed investigation of 15 complaint cases in this quarter. Of these 15 completed cases, two were substantiated, two were partially substantiated, seven were concluded and settled after inquiries by the Ombudsman and two were withdrawn by the applicants. The Ombudsman had discontinued investigation into one case and had not undertaken investigation into another case having considered the circumstances of the cases. As at March 31, 2013, the Ombudsman was still investigating 13 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/Monday, June 10, 2013