Privacy Commissioner should have power to order release of documents: NDP

The Sask. Party has fought tooth and nail to ensure information about the GTH is kept from Saskatchewan people. They have been asked by the Information and Privacy Commissioner to release public documents that they claim would shed unfavourable light or bring “negative media attention” to this dubious project. However, the Commissioner’s request has been dismissed and the minister responsible for the GTH isn’t in a hurry to press this issue.

“If the Commissioner had the power to order documents be released, this would not be an issue,” said NDP Justice Critic Nicole Sarauer. “The Information and Privacy Commissioner should have the final say when it comes to the release of public documents. Commissioners in other provinces have this power. Why not Saskatchewan?”

Several provinces, including Alberta and B.C., allow their information commissioners to order the government to produce records. The Sask. Party member for Meadow Lake even recommended this when he was running to become premier. He said he would “reverse the onus in the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act to require disclosure on the recommendation of the Commissioner.”

“After the campaign bluster has died down, we’ve heard nothing more about this from the Sask. Party,” said Sarauer. “The minister responsible should make this a top priority. The people of Saskatchewan deserve to know the whole story when millions of their dollars are being wasted.”