Freedom of Information Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 10:00 pm on 14th November 2000.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Lord Archer of Sandwell Lord Archer of Sandwell Labour 10:00 pm, 14th November 2000

My Lords, my recollection sometimes leaves something to be desired these days. I fully accept what my noble and learned friend says. But appropriate provision can be made in the Bill for such specific examples. Indeed, I am not sure that there is not already appropriate provision--that is, for information that is to be disclosed at a future date. There are a number of provisions that may already catch those examples. If they do not, it is not difficult to make appropriate provision. If one is trying to catch one particular hare, it is not appropriate to spread a fence across 40 miles of countryside and catch every animal in sight. That is what I understood my noble and learned friend to mean when he said that the provision was a "catch-all".

The provision has been condemned from the Conservative Front Bench, the Liberal Front Bench and the Conservative and Labour Back Benches. Repeating the arguments would make no great contribution to the debate. I have explained the purpose of the amendment, which I think is self-explanatory. I beg to move.