Freedom of Information Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 7:34 pm on 14th November 2000.

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Photo of Lord Falconer of Thoroton Lord Falconer of Thoroton Minister of State, Cabinet Office 7:34 pm, 14th November 2000

My Lords, that is a little unfair. First, the timing was agreed by the Front Bench. Secondly, the amendment in effect includes in the list the tribunal that will replace tribunals already referred to in the list in Clause 22(3). The purpose of the tribunal is to deal with all complaints against the intelligence agencies, complaints regarding the use of the powers in Section 17 of the RIP Act, exclusion of material from legal proceedings, and any other proceedings allocated to it by the Secretary of State. I am advised that those are the sorts of things dealt with already by the tribunals identified in Clause 22 which it will replace. So although it is perfectly legitimate to raise these issues, this is in effect a technical amendment because it identifies the name and status of the new tribunal dealing with the issues dealt with by the other tribunals.