The Ombudsman helps the community in its dealings with government agencies.
We handle complaints against government agencies and undertake investigations and inspections. We also encourage good administration by giving feedback and training to agencies. We will initiate our own investigations where we see the need.
Independent and impartial, we focus on fairness for all.
The winter edition of our new e-newsletter is now available in our newsroom.
This calculates the maximum time limit within which a response must be sent to a requester by an agency.
November 21, 2014
The Ombudsman has published his opinion on a complaint concerning the Police refusal to release information about a charging decision. The complainant wanted to know ‘how and why’ Police preferred a charge of careless use of a firearm over manslaughter, in relation to the hunting death of Alexander Cameron McDonald. The information at issue was ‘legally privileged’ and protected by section 9(2)(h) of the OIA, but the Ombudsman considered that the public interest required disclosure of a summary of the reasons. This would serve to increase the transparency of the decision-making process and promote accountability of the Police for their decision.You can read the full opinion here.
November 7, 2014
The Chief Ombudsman has released her opinion on a complaint about the manner in which the Horowhenua District Council investigated a councillor's alleged code of conduct breaches. Dame Beverley Wakem found that the Mayor and Deputy Mayor unreasonably failed to disqualify themselves from investigating the matter on grounds that they could be perceived to be biased. You can read the full opinion here.
October 22, 2014
The Ombudsman has released his opinion on a complaint about the NZ Fire Service’s decision to refuse a request for the NZ Localities dataset, unless the requester signed a licence agreement governing use of the dataset. Professor Paterson found that withholding an unlicensed copy of the dataset was necessary to avoid prejudice to the measures the Fire Service has in place to protect public health and safety, and to protect or mitigate against material loss to members of the public: “A conservative approach is prudent when considering the necessity of avoiding prejudice to measures that are designed to protect against potentially devastating consequences.” The public interest is met because the dataset is available free, provided the licence agreement is signed, and the licence requirements are not onerous. You can read the full opinion here.More from the newsroom Subscribe