A commissioner at the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission has left his post after five years to join Sun News, as the broadcaster seeks “must carry” status.

Marc Patrone’s contract with the CRTC ended on March 18. He is now the Sun News Network’s director of news operations for Western Canada.

The Chronicle Herald reported Patrone’s new job Friday, and CTV confirmed the move.

Sun News vice-president Kory Teneycke sent an email to CTV News showing that the federal conflict of interest commissioner approved Patrone’s hiring.

In a letter, the commissioner’s office noted that Patrone’s dealings with Quebecor Media took place more than one year before his last day his last day at the CRTC and were not related to Sun News Network’s licencing interests. As a result, he was not violating his post-employment obligations under the Conflict of Interest Act, the letter said.

Sun Media is asking the CRTC to grant its news channel “mandatory carriage.” If approved, cable and satellite customers across Canada will be paying to have its news channel as part of their TV packages.

On Thursday, a well-placed source told CTV’s Ottawa Bureau Chief Robert Fife that Sen. Mike Duffy approached a Conservative insider with connections to the CRTC three weeks ago to discuss Sun Media.

“You know people at the CRTC,” the insider quoted Duffy as saying. “This is an important decision on Sun Media. They have to play with the team and support Sun Media’s request.”