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Statement on Commissioner Mario Dion's retirement

February 14, 2023 – Ottawa

"I have been honoured to serve Parliament and Canadians as Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner for the past five years and am grateful for the confidence Parliament has placed in me. It is my hope that I have contributed in some measure to transparency and accountability in support of Canadian democracy.

Those in public office have a sacred duty to always act in the interest of the public they serve. I commend regulatees for taking their obligations under the conflict of interest regimes seriously and working with the Office to achieve and maintain compliance. Many have taken advantage of the learning opportunities offered by the Office as part of its new, proactive approach to education. Their willingness to learn and follow the rules confirms my belief that the vast majority are honest people who want to do the right thing.

I thank all Office employees for their hard work and dedication in helping me fulfill my mandate. This includes developing and following new processes and procedures that have helped the Office become more efficient and effective. Among them are a three-day service standard for responding to regulatees' requests for advice, a transparency-by-default approach to inquiries from the media and members of the public, and a targeted 12-month timeframe for conducting investigations, which we met for all those completed during my mandate.

I firmly believe that educating regulatees and the public about the importance of avoiding conflicts of interest serves to help restore Canadians' trust in public officials and the institutions in which they serve and, ultimately, in our democracy.

The role of Commissioner is a fitting one from which to retire after 43 years o​f public service. Regrettably, I cannot continue to discharge the responsibilities of the position because of persistent health issues and will be stepping down effective February 21, 2023. I wish the Office and the next Commissioner well moving forward."​​

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