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Alberta’s auditor general ‘very likely’ to review province’s COVID-19 response

Alberta's new auditor general Doug Wylie delivers his first report in Edmonton, Wednesday, Nov.7, 2018. Wylie says the province needs to do a better job monitoring the contracts to run its $1-billion SuperNet program delivering broadband access. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Dean Bennett

The province’s auditor general is “very likely” to examine Alberta’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a spokesperson for the Office of the Auditor General, with more details are expected later this week.

Val Mellesmoen, spokesperson for the auditor general’s office, said a formal request has not been made, however the office is tracking a number of inquiries from the public about the government’s response.

“As this is a significant event with a significant response and investment by the province, it is of equally significant importance and interest to the members of the Legislature Assembly and to all Albertans,” Mellesmoen said.

“As a result, it is very likely we will be conducting audit work, at the appropriate time, related to the provincial response to the COVID-19 response.”

RELATED: Ottawa will need post-mortem review of coronavirus response: Trudeau

Reviews of the pandemic may become commonplace across the country: the Interim Auditor General of Canada has said he is conducting an audit of the federal government’s COVID-19 emergency response, a similar request has been made of Prince Edward Island’s auditor and Nova Scotia’s auditor says his office is considering a review of that province’s response.

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READ MORE: N.S. auditor general says COVID-19 response a likely topic for future review

Alberta’s office has not done any specific reviews on preparedness for a pandemic, however it is completing an audit on emergency preparedness in general, which is slated to be released late summer or early fall.

Mellesmoen said the audit was conducted prior to the public health state of emergency being declared in March so it does not deal specifically with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Audit teams are currently conducting the 2019-2020 year-end financial audit of many government entities and ministries.

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