Order Papers: another way for the government to not answer questions

Helene Laverdiere, NDP's foreign-affairs critic

By Kady O'Malley, CBC News, 12 March 2012

"Since Confederation, MPs have dutifully filled the back pages of the Order Paper with all manner of questions on the administration of government -- specifically, questions that, by their very nature, were simply too technical or otherwise unwieldy to be answered during QP. Judging from this response to a query from NDP foreign affairs critic Helene Laverdiere on the Office of Religious Freedom, it really may no longer be worth the price of the toner used to print it out for tabling purposes. Not, that is, unless members are ready to kick up a fuss when a government doesn't even pretend to provide an answer" [...]

Voices-Voix comments: As citizens, our main channel of accountable communication with the government is through our elected representatives. A government that does not respond to clear questions for information from Parliament, information that is significant for program, policy or expenditure,- is not being a responsible government, responsible to the elected Parliament, and hence to us. It's more than just being able to use your voice somewhere or not; democracy is about how voices are heard, listened to, and responded to.  

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Photo: Dave Chan/ The Globe and Mail