Arrangements for the handling of complaints and other matters
Handling of Complaints
27. Complaints recorded by the Panel and which have not, or do not need to be referred to Commission, and are not for the time being referred back to the Panel by the Commission, can be dealt with by the Panel as follows:-
(a) the Panel can decide to handle the complaint otherwise than in accordance with paragraphs 42 to 54; or
(b) the Panel can decide to take no action;
28. Where either is the case, the Panel can handle the complaint in whatever manner it sees fit provided the Panel considers that:-
(a) the complaint is concerned entirely with the conduct of a relevant office holder in relation to a person who was working in his capacity as a member of the relevant office holder's staff at the time when the conduct is suppose to have taken place.
(b) more than 12 months have elapsed between the incident, or the latest incident, giving rise to the complaint and the making of the complaint and either:-
(i) no good reason for the delay has been shown, or
(ii) injustice would be likely to be caused by the delay;
(c) the matter is already the subject of a complaint;
(d) the complaint discloses neither the name and address of the complainant nor that of any other interested person and it is not reasonably practicable to ascertain such a name or address;
(e) the complaint is vexatious, oppressive or otherwise an abuse of the procedures for dealing with complaints;
(f) the complaint is repetitious.
29. A complaint is repetitious for the purposes of the preceding paragraph if, and only if:-
(a) it is substantially the same as a previous complaint (whether made by or on behalf of the same or a different complainant), or it concerns substantially the same conduct as a previous conduct matter;
(b) it contains no fresh allegations which significantly affect the account of the conduct complained of;
(c) no fresh evidence, being evidence which was not reasonably available at the time the previous complaint was made, is tendered in support of it; and
(d) as regards the previous complaint or conduct matter, either:-
(i) the commission took action in response to an investigation report as required by the regulations;
(ii) the complaint was resolved in accordance with paragraphs 42 to 54 inclusively;
(iii) the complainant gave such notification that he withdrew the complaint as it mentioned in paragraph 31; or
(iv) the Panel decided to handle the complaint in whatever way it saw fit, in accordance with this paragraph.
30. The Panel will notify the complainant that it has decided to handle the complaint as permitted by paragraphs 27 and 28.