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Opinion

Public officials are expected to always act in the public interest

By Mario Dion      

They are responsible first and foremost for ensuring that their decisions are guided by the public interest and never by their own private interests or those of their families, relatives, or friends.

Ethics Commissioner Mario Dion, pictured during a 2017 interview with The Hill Times. Now two years into his mandate, Mr. Dion says his office will continue to use new technologies to better educate elected officials and the public on ethical conduct. 'One of the best tools our Office currently uses to demonstrate transparency is our public registry,' says Mr. Mario Dion. The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade

Earlier this month, marked two years since I was appointed as Canada’s second conflict of interest and ethics commissioner, responsible for a number of duties under the Conflict of Interest Act and the Conflict of Interest Code for Members of the House of Commons. I have had ample opportunity during that time to reflect on my role in relation to the two regimes administered by the office. These regimes seek to ensure that elected and appointed officials do not use their positions to further their private interests or those of anyone else. In order to do so, these public officials must have a good understanding of what is expected of them.

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