Whitehall stalls release of reports of ID cards and NPfIT

The government is exploiting a feature in the Freedom of Information Act which allows it put off indefinitely the release of internal reports on the ID cards scheme and the NHS IT programme, despite rulings that they should be published.

Computer Weekly has learned that a High Court case over whether the independent assessments, known as Gateway reviews, on ID cards should be published, is unlikely to take place until June next year. This is nearly two years after the information commissioner ruled they should be disclosed.

If the Treasury's Office of Government Commerce loses its bid in the High Court to keep the Gateway reviews on ID cards secret, it could go to the House of Lords, which could further delay publication of the reports.

Computer Weekly has also learned that Whitehall officials have gained the approval of ministers to take a similar route on the troubled NHS National Programme for IT.

The information commissioner ruled last month that papers on a seminar at 10 Downing Street in February 2002, which was chaired by then prime minister Tony Blair, should be released. The seminar was on NHS IT and led to the launch of the NHS's National Programme for IT.

But the Cabinet Office decided last week to appeal against the information commissioner's ruling on the Downing Street papers. The appeal will go before the Information Tribunal next year and possibly to the High Court the year after.

Until any final decision is taken, which is likely to be 2009 or 2010, the Cabinet Office is entitled to keep the Downing Street papers secret. The papers are already five years old.

Just what dark secrets do this government want to hide.
What is so secret about the ID scheme and the NPfIT that government must lie, cheat and deceive.
What have they built into these systems that we must never know about it.

In 2010 it will all be too late, the whistleblowers must find heart and act now.

NuLab – Destroying Britain from the inside out.


About IanPJ

Ian Parker-Joseph, former Leader of the Libertarian Party UK, who currently heads PDPS Internet Hosting and the Personal Deed Poll Services company, has been an IT industry professional for over 20 years, providing Business Consulting, Programme and Project Management, specialising in the recovery of Projects that have failed in a process driven world. Ian’s experience is not limited to the UK, and he has successfully delivered projects in the Middle East, Africa, US, Russia, Poland, France and Germany. Working within different cultures, Ian has occupied high profile roles within multi-nationals such as Nortel and Cable & Wireless. These experiences have given Ian an excellent insight into world events, and the way that they can shape our own national future. His extensive overseas experiences have made him all too aware of how the UK interacts with its near neighbours, its place in the Commonwealth, and how our nation fits into the wider world. He is determined to rebuild many of the friendships and commercial relationships with other nations that have been sadly neglected over the years, and would like to see greater energy and food security in these countries, for the benefit of all. Ian is a vocal advocate of small government, individual freedom, low taxation and a minimum of regulation. Ian believes deeply and passionately in freedom and independence in all areas of life, and is now bringing his professional experiences to bear in the world of politics.
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