MBIE welcomes findings of review

Published: Wed 9 Oct 2019 03:03 PM
The Chief Executive of the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) has today welcomed the findings of an independent review of the process used by Immigration New Zealand (INZ) to prepare files for decision-makers who make residence deportation liability decisions.
The process for preparing and presenting cases to the Minister and other Delegated Decision Makers (DDMs) has been in place for a number of years and has not materially changed. However, in view of the scrutiny of the process and systems used by INZ in preparing the Karel Sroubek case, Chief Executive Carolyn Tremain considered it was timely to review whether the process is still fit for purpose.
The review was carried out by Mike Heron QC and concluded that the process and operational practices used by INZ are sound in the current settings, but found there is some room for improvement.
“I welcome the review’s findings that INZ collects the information necessary to enable decision-makers to make informed decisions and presents that information to decision-makers appropriately and professionally,” Ms Tremain says.
“In addition, the review found that every one of 30 case files reviewed was drafted fairly and objectively by INZ.”
However, Ms Tremain acknowledges that the review highlighted some aspects of the process that can be improved and makes five main recommendations to strengthen the existing processes for preparing files for decision-makers. Those recommendations are:
• The Minister should be able to request advice from INZ in complex cases and INZ should develop further guidance for the Minister on the types of cases warranting specific advice from officials
• INZ’s Resolutions team should have a limited inquiry function to check or corroborate the veracity of information provided to INZ
• A simplified two-stage process could be applied to criminal cases where the offence is relatively minor
• Consideration should be given to shifting the DDMs process in automatic liability cases (involving more serious offending) to after an appeal option to the Immigration and Protection Tribunal (IPT) has been exercised or lapsed
• Other process changes could be made including sending copies of relevant evidence to a client who faces deportation, obtaining a final Summary of Facts in relation to all criminal cases and streamlining certain administrative processes.
Ms Tremain says INZ accepts the recommendations and will now look at the process for implementing those recommendations. Where policy or legislative changes are proposed, MBIE will work with relevant government agencies to provide advice to the Government.

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