I'm writing a critical review. I have written the following sentence. I would like to know if there is some significant problems. Especially I have a problem with the expression "stated to be a reason in order to". Could it be "stated as a reason"? Or some other way? And could it be "reason for"?
"Thus, while an objective, which in itself is legitimate, would has been stated to be a reason in order to override a right, the restriction may nevertheless be in fact motivated by hidden or unacceptable reasons, in which case the stated reason is just the pretext."