Info watchdog takes aim at Harper’s stone wall
Ottawa bureau chief
OTTAWA–Canada's outgoing information watchdog is threatening to seize documents after complaints that the bureaucratic wing of the Prime Minister's Office is stonewalling some access-to-information requests.
The information commissioner served formal notice on the Privy Council Office this week, warning that commission staff would use their legal powers to seize the documents themselves if the paperwork wasn't provided by today.
"I'm about to walk into PCO next week ... for files they didn't give us. We're going to take them and they can't stop us," Robert Marleau told the Star.
"I cannot be denied access. I can walk into any federal government premise without notice and take what I need."
Marleau says that he's threatened to do this before and it usually resulted in the documents being handed over. But part of me hopes he will be forced to march in there and start pulling files. Maybe then people would finally understand that every single promise Harper made that originally brought him to power - accountability, transparency, responsibility - was a goddamned lie.
UPDATE: This guy could teach Ignatieff a thing or two about ultimatums.
Privy Council officials have ended months of stonewalling and handed over documents requested by the federal information watchdog.
Yesterday's disclosure of files came only after Information Commissioner Robert Marleau threatened to have his staff enter the Privy Council offices and seize the paperwork themselves.
Privy Council staff delivered some documents yesterday, the deadline set by Marleau, and promised to deliver the rest soon.