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David Seymour no longer exempt from OIA

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 29/06/2016

Parliamentary under-secretaries are no longer exempt from the Official Information Act.

There's only one of them, ACT leader David Seymour, and he says it won't make the slightest difference.

Under-secretaries are rare appointments and they've always been exempt from the OIA.

Labour's Adrian Rurawhe drafted a member's bill to change that, and last year it was drawn from the ballot.

The government opposed it on its first reading, lost the vote, and then decided to support it.

It passed its final stage, the third reading, on Wednesday night by 109 votes to 12.

Mr Rurawhe says it's about open and transparent government but government MPs, and Mr Seymour, consider it to be pointless.

Mr Seymour says all the information he holds is also in the possession of ministers - who aren't exempt from the OIA.

NZ First opposed the bill when the third reading vote was taken, saying it was a waste of time.

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