EDMONTON – The RCMP confirmed to Global News Friday it has opened an investigation into the allegations made against former premier Alison Redford.
In August, the Auditor General released a report that found Redford used government aircraft for personal and partisan purposes.
The report was turned over to the RCMP by the justice minister for review.
The government has declined to comment because it is still an active police investigation.
In July, sources told Global News Alberta Minister of Justice Jonathan Denis asked that all relevant documents be forwarded to the RCMP so that they could conduct an investigation independent of political interference, if they felt an investigation was warranted.
Redford’s staff booked seats for “false passengers” on government aircraft in order to limit flight access to the former premier, a report from Alberta’s auditor general said.
The report was leaked to CBC and Global News confirmed the practice took place on government flights.
In March, Auditor General Merwan Saher agreed to look into the use of government aircraft after being asked by Redford herself. Saher’s report was released in August.
At the time, the Wildrose Party said the allegations amount to fraud.
On Friday, Alberta Liberal Leader Raj Sherman said the public needs to know more details about the RCMP investigation.
Sherman said it’s important to know if current legislature members are being investigated as well.
If so, he said Premier Jim Prentice must ask them to leave the government caucus until the probe is complete.
“If any current PC MLAs are under investigation by the RCMP, then the government cannot operate free from distraction.”
NDP critic Deron Bilous said there still needs to be a public inquiry to determine what happened under Redford.
“There are going to be questions left unanswered because they just don’t fit into an RCMP investigation,” said Bilous. “[Information such as] which cabinet member knew what and didn’t act on it, and who was implicated in this beyond Redford.
“It is possible we’ve got current sitting cabinet ministers who were implicated from months ago,” he added. “Will we ever get to the bottom of this?”
With files from The Canadian Press