The Campbell administration continues to claim it's the most open and accountable government in the country. But, after six years in office, that claim has become a farce - and a hypocritical one at that. After all, the provincial Liberals are, arguably, the least open and accountable political party in British Columbia. For example, the party refuses to discuss who's on their payroll, classifying the information as "strategic." So if the Liberals don't want to let the sun shine in on their operations, perhaps it's time we demanded legislation to force those blinds open?
Right now, parties in this province aren't required to disclose their annual expenses, except in the most general way. We spent $154,001 on media advertising, $151,509 on research and polling and so on. But in Ontario, parties must list who actually supplied those services if the expenditure was over $1,000.
That means, if a similar requirement had existed in British Columbia during the Campbell administration's first term, the Liberals might have found it more difficult to allegedly award two $10,000 dirty media manipulation contracts to then ministerial assistant David Basi without British Columbians finding out. Allegations relating to those contracts have been made but not proven during court proceedings connected to the Basi-Virk trial.