The Canadian Press release a news story today about how the PMO (Prime Minister's Office)told the Transportation Safety Board to hold off on the release of a report on their investigation on the death Laura Gainey, daughter of hockey hall of famer and General Manager of the Canadiens Bob Gainey.
In a series of emails with the PMO, the office of Rona Ambrose wrote to Aaron Masson (director of communications for the Transport Safety Board) and said: “My Chief of Staff has just been told by PMO to hold off on the release of the report until after the election.
However, PMO would like to be made aware of any development that occurs once you speak to the family and tell them that there is a blackout on release of reports during the [election] writ period.”
A lawyer named Michel Drapeau would specializes in public access to information said: “The Transportation Safety Board makes reports and makes findings. For any political power to interfere with it, it's improper ... totally improper.They don't even hide the fact it's for a political purpose. They were doing it ... in preparation for an election campaign.”
I'm not exactly sure if what was done by the PMO is exactly illegal, but it seems to me to be pretty darned unethical, why should an independent investigatory body, such as the TSB, take orders from the PMO? And better yet, should an election really make a father wait 2 more months to find out the investigation details into his daughter's death on the whim of a Prime Minister?
I think that this is beyond inappropriate, stalling any reports for reasons other than immediate national security is not something our government should be doing. Not to mention that I didn't think our government was supposed to be able to tell independent agencies what to do. Hopefully this was a one time incident, a little blunder and it won't happen again. But the way I look at it, once is already too much.
I'm sure that heads will role in the Harper government, let's just see who they make the scapegoat this time.