A journalism professor says BC’s Conflict of Interest Commissioner must be answering questions from media even as he signals he won’t do anything of the type.
Mount Royal Journalism Professor Sean Holman says an independent officer of the legislature needs to be accountable.
“That is what we expect in a democracy. Paul Fraser is part of that democracy. I find it passingly odd that someone who is in an accountability function would be denying requests for comment from journalists.”
Holman says with Fraser’s son being a Deputy Minister in the Clark government it might be time to step down.
“I would think seriously about stepping down not necessarily because there is anything that he is doing wrong but instead because it creates this perception every time he is making rulings.”
After clearing the Premier of any conflict of interest Fraser emailed a reporter saying would ignore all his requests for comment.
Clark was revealed to be pulling in up to $50,000 a year from the party, in-part for her role in the fundraisers which could cost up to $20,000 a plate.
Critics charged the events were “pay-to-play,” offering private access to the premier for a hefty fee.
But Fraser ruled the events were of a political nature, and not to the premier’s personal advantage.
“Helping to boost the Party’s financial wellbeing is a political benefit, rather than a private financial one.”
That ruling drew further condemnation from the opposition, along with calls for an investigation, after it emerged the findings were leaked to the Premier’s office before being made publicly available.