Despite the state's alleged commitment to transparency in the breakdown of the expenses incurred in the Prime Minister’s residence, the Prime Minister is attempting to prevent the release of information.
The Movement for the Freedom of Information stated today (Monday) that the Prime Minister's Office has refused to honor a judgment handed down in which it was agreed that the office would forward information regarding the expenses of the Prime Minister’s residence in Jerusalem.
The Movement noted that in January, the Court decided to dismiss a petition filed by the Movement for the delivery of an invoice, after the Prime Minister’s Office had committed to transfer the list to the Movement within 90 days.
However in April, a few days before the deadline, the Prime Minister's Office filed a request to postpone the deadline to provide the information and included the Prime Minister himself as a respondent to the petition, citing that providing the list could harm the privacy of Prime Minister Netanyahu and his family.
"Upon completion of the collection process, the Respondent realized that the contents of the petition invoices included, among others, information with details about the Prime Minister and his family, whose release could harm him," said the Prime Minister's request.
It was also noted, "Last week the prime minister approached the attorney general's office in order to delay the delivery of the information. It was claimed that the information contained in invoices regarding private expenses included information which contains includes details about the Prime Minister and his family."
The Movement was outraged by the request and submitted their response court, claiming that the Prime Minister was attempting to get a "second chance" in court, and lacked any legal basis. "It is unclear to the prosecution where the respondent got the chutzpah to turn to the court at this stage, for the respondent himself is aware of the lack of any legal basis for his request,” said the Movement for Freedom of Information in response.
The Movement noted today, “It’s a pity that we had to once again go to back to court to demand the level of detail which in our opinion is appropriate, for the publication of information. And it’s a shame that the Prime Minister did not respect the judgement made. As we know, we are the ones funding these expenses, and we have the right to see the invoices, for which the funds come out of our pockets.”
In response, the Prime Minister said: "An application was filed in court on this issue and the proceeding is still pending. The State shall give its statement as part of the procedure, as is customary.”