Access to Government Information

Monday, 20 April 2009 13:12 PAG
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A year ago this piece of information "Liechtenstein - false teeth and stamps are its main exports" prompted P A G to ask this question to the IoM Post Office:-

'I am trying to find out the turnover of the Philatelic Bureau, but could not see it listed separately in the sets of accounts you recently emailed me. I note that an aim for the coming year is "The profitable operation of a philatelic bureau for the marketing and sale of postage stamps and coins to collectors" . Could you please advise me the turnover for the unit for the last 5 years?'

Simple, you would think, but oh no commercial confidentiality prohibited release of the figures and the request turned into a real saga involving Mr Speaker, the Chair and Board of IoM Post Office and High Bailiff Michael Moyle (acting as Commissioner).

See what happened by reading his findings. Please do spare a few minutes as the Commissioner's findings exemplify shortcomings in the prevailing attitude to information requests under the existing Code.