Government is too secretive, says national ombudsman

The Dutch government gives too little information to its citizens and should make minutes of cabinet meetings available to the public, the national ombudsman Alex Brenninkmeijer says in Friday’s Nederlands Dagblad.

‘When it comes to typical decision-making, such as on draft legislation which is going to parliament or government investment, I would make the minutes public,’ the ombudsman said.
The 20-year secrecy ruling is exaggerated, Brenninkmeijer said.’The government is like an oyster that wants to keep everything to itself, he said.
The ombudsman also criticised freedom of information legislation which creates a legal jungle for journalists and ordinary citizens, he said.
‘It is essential that the government actively makes information available to ensure confidence in the democratic rule of law,’ he told the paper.

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