Ottawa

Law class

The House of Commons law clerk considers Dean Del Mastro’s demand that the CBC turn over documents related to a matter already before the courts.

The sub judice convention is based on the principle that each branch of our parliamentary system of government should respect the functions of the other branches and not interfere or appear to do what belongs to one of the other branches to do. Our parliamentary system of government is based on a separation of the three basic governmental powers or functions: the executive, the legislative and the judicial. The judicial branch operates—and must be seen to operate—fully independent of both the executive and legislative branches. The credibility of the law courts as impartial arbiters of legal rights and as interpreters of the law depends on a clear recognition by the other branches of their independence.

Mr. Del Mastro previously, if temporarily, sought to have a sitting judge testify before a parliamentary committee.