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Ottawa , March 2, 2010 – The Interim Information Commissioner of Canada is conducting priority investigations into complaints she received over specific allegations of political interference with requests made under the Access to Information Act (the Act) at Public Works and Government Services Canada and at two other departments.

“These are serious allegations which will be investigated thoroughly and fairly. My findings and conclusions will rely solely on the evidence gathered in each case,” said Interim Information Commissioner of Canada, Suzanne Legault.

In addition to these investigations, the Commissioner will undertake a systemic investigation into delays and time extensions, as announced in the three-year plan published last July. The scope and focus of the systemic investigation will be expanded to examine whether political interference in the processing of access requests is a cause of delay or unduly restricts disclosure under the Act, including any reviews and approvals by the offices of ministers or institutional heads.

The Office of the Information Commissioner is an independent investigative body that ensures that requesters’ rights to access information under the control of the federal government are respected. Every investigation undertaken is, by law, conducted in private.   

For media inquiries please contact:

Thérèse Boisclair
Director of Communications
Office of the Information Commissioner of Canada
Tel: (613) 943-4368