The joint investigation by Alberta’s Information and Privacy Commissioner and Public Interest Commissioner into allegations of improper destruction of records by Alberta Environment and Sustainable Resource Development in the wake of the 2015 provincial election leaves more questions and demands further investigation says Alberta Party Opposition Leader Clark.
“This is why I wrote my letter of May 8th, and submitted a variety of FOIP requests on these particular records,” said Clark. “It was the very first thing I did as an MLA. I only wish the new Government had taken this seriously – perhaps then some of those 344 boxes of records would not have been destroyed.”
Clark called on the Information and Privacy Commissioner to undertake a second investigation.
“This report raises several questions that merit deeper investigation,” said Clark. “Albertans deserve to know which files were destroyed and whether some can be recovered. I would also like to know how many FOIP requests were not completed, and to see those requests reopened.
Clark called on the Government to act quickly to tighten records management rules and add consequences for records destruction. “In government, it can very tempting to allow this sort of practice to occur. However, there is no point in having the rules in place without having consequences for breaking them.”
“We need to build a culture of transparency and accountability in our province, rather than one of secrecy and built-in deniability.”
“I call on the Government to tighten procedures and resist the temptation to continue doing things the way the previous government did. I highly recommend they put in place all recommendations made by the report, including the use of sanctions for contravening records management regulations, to do so quickly and to report back to Albertans when they have done so.”
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Alberta Party Caucus