Axing CSIS watchdog 'huge loss' for Canadians, says former inspector general - InfoNews

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Axing CSIS watchdog 'huge loss' for Canadians, says former inspector general

Eva Plunkett, then Inspector General of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, is shown in her office in Ottawa, in this February 17, 2005. says the government's decision to abolish her office is "a huge loss" to the important task of keeping an eye on CSIS. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand
August 09, 2012 - 5:01 PM

OTTAWA - The former inspector general of Canada's spy service says the government's decision to abolish her office is "a huge loss" to the important task of keeping an eye on CSIS.

Eva Plunkett retired last December and the Conservative government subsequently scrapped her watchdog role, saying it would save money and eliminate duplication. The government says the Security Intelligence Review Committee — a panel of appointees that reports to Parliament — will take over the inspector general's functions.

In her first public comments on the matter, Eva Plunkett says it is "ridiculous" to think the review committee could do the same job of probing the Canadian Security Intelligence Service.

She says the two watchdogs were different bodies with distinct roles.

As inspector general, Plunkett served as the public safety minister's eyes and ears on the intelligence service — a sort of early warning system to point out brewing problems.

News from © The Canadian Press, 2012
The Canadian Press

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