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Statistics on Code on Access to Information for first quarter of 2014

     The Government received a total of 1,196 requests for information under the Code on Access to Information in the first quarter of 2014, a spokesman for the Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Bureau said today (July 3).

     The total number of requests received since the introduction of the Code in March 1995 and up to the end of March 2014 amounted to 41,505. Of these, 2,346 requests were subsequently withdrawn by the requestors and 1,815 requests covered cases in which the bureaux/departments concerned did not hold the requested information. As at March 31, 2014, 152 requests were still being processed by bureaux/departments.

     Among the 37,192 requests which covered information held by bureaux/departments and which the bureaux/departments had responded to, 36,317 requests (97.6 per cent) were met, either in full (35,535 requests) or in part (782 requests), and 875 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 2014, the Ombudsman received 16 complaints relating to requests for information. In this quarter, the Ombudsman completed the investigation of 24 complaints. Of these 24 completed cases, one was substantiated, four were partially substantiated, two were unsubstantiated, and 14 were concluded and settled after inquiries by the Ombudsman. The Ombudsman had discontinued investigation into one case and had not undertaken investigation into another two cases having considered the circumstances of the cases. As at March 31, 2014, the Ombudsman was still investigating 14 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, July 3, 2014