House of Commons Hansard #8 of the 36th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was quebec.

Topics

Quebec Premier
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Marlene Jennings Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is often said that travel broadens the mind, but I did not think that the Premier of Quebec could be so transformed after fewer than two days away.

I had to keep rubbing my eyes when I read in the paper this morning that Lucien Bouchard boasted to his French hosts about the bilingual nature—I repeat, the bilingual nature—of the Quebec labour force.

One might think that the leader of Quebec's separatists, who never misses an opportunity to do battle on the linguistic front, has two different personalities: one international and one local. Outside the country, he recognizes the virtues of bilingualism, while in Quebec, he is against it.

If he goes on like this—

Quebec Premier
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

The Speaker

I am sorry to interrupt the hon. member. The member for Charlotte has the floor.

Aids
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Greg Thompson Charlotte, NB

Mr. Speaker, this week is AIDS awareness week. Canadians from all parts of our country are volunteering their time, money and compassion to increase public awareness of this disease. I am extremely proud of the thousands of Canadians who have chosen to participate.

Almost every family in Canada has in some manner been touched by this disease. We all know people who have been infected with HIV through blood transfusions and who have since passed away. To their families I express not only my compassion for their grief, but also my assurance to do everything possible to guarantee that all future blood supplies are safe.

The red ribbon has become the symbol for AIDS, the commitment to end this tragic disease and a memorial to the children, women and men who have died from it.

Research and awareness are key in our fight for a cure. Let us all work together toward that end.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

October 1st, 1997 / 2:10 p.m.

Reform

Preston Manning Calgary Southwest, AB

Mr. Speaker, the big news out of the Middle East today is putting Canada on the world stage in a very unfortunate light.

Two people charged in an attack on a Jordanian Hamas leader were carrying Canadian passports. Today it appears the attackers may have been Israeli Mossad agents.

Will the prime minister tell Canadians what the Government of Canada knows about this attack and about these two Canadian passport holders?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice
Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, we have been informed that there are allegations to the effect that two persons were carrying Canadian passports in this situation. We are at this moment in communication with the authorities in Israel and in Jordan to find out if it is true.

It is completely unacceptable to this government that anybody authorized by a government would use a Canadian passport to perpetrate any illegal action as they have done.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Reform

Preston Manning Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the reports in this instance seem to imply the involvement of a number of foreign governments, the Israeli government, the Jordanian government and perhaps other governments.

Would the prime minister clear the air and tell us precisely with which foreign governments he or the department has been in contact with respect to this incident?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice
Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I am informed that the Minister of Foreign Affairs is in touch at this moment with the Government of Jordan and the Government of Israel. I do not know of any other governments that have been involved. If so, I will inform the hon. Leader of the Opposition.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Reform

Preston Manning Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, this incident occurred almost a week ago. Yesterday the minister promised more information in the House today. Canada's reputation must be upheld. This government must protect the good reputation of the Canadian passport.

Can the prime minister advise whether the Department of Foreign Affairs has ever been approached directly or indirectly by foreign governments to provide Canadian passports to non-Canadian operatives?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice
Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Prime Minister

I have never been informed of any such request by any government.

Revenue Canada
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Reform

Deborah Grey Edmonton North, AB

Mr. Speaker, it looks like FedEx is the courier of choice at Revenue Canada. Not only does Federal Express get special treatment at the border, but Revenue Canada employees are actually going on temporary leave to work at this private company.

What does the minister plan to do to stop this blatant conflict of interest?

Revenue Canada
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Vancouver South—Burnaby
B.C.

Liberal

Herb Dhaliwal Minister of National Revenue

Mr. Speaker, I want to assure the hon. member and the House that Revenue Canada staff provides no preferential treatment to Federal Express over any other carrier involved in the departmental courier program.

Under the department's collective agreement with our unions employees are entitled once in their career to apply for unpaid personal needs leave. They are reminded also of the conflict of interest guidelines should they choose to take outside employment during this unpaid leave.

Revenue Canada
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Reform

Deborah Grey Edmonton North, AB

Mr. Speaker, it is funny he should talk about personal needs. I am not sure what the qualifications for personal needs would be to go work for FedEx during the time they are unpaid.

I want to ask the minister something specific. There is a veteran customs officer we have just heard about who is going to be blowing the whistle on the corruption at Revenue Canada. It is not just an isolated case like the minister would like to talk about. Documents are about to be filed. This officer reports that when the minister's staff members were supposed to be searching aeroplanes at Toronto's Pearson airport they were actually pulled away from their jobs to expedite FedEx shipments. There is no excuse for this and I want to ask—

Revenue Canada
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

The Speaker

If the minister would like to answer the preamble he is welcome to.

Revenue Canada
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Vancouver South—Burnaby
B.C.

Liberal

Herb Dhaliwal Minister of National Revenue

Mr. Speaker, if the hon. member has anything substantial rather than rhetoric and cheap political points she is trying to make she should table it in the House right now instead of making these types of accusations which are incorrect and not true.

Supreme Court Of Canada
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, today the Prime Minister appointed a new justice to the Supreme Court of Canada, Mr. Justice Michel Bastarache. This is obviously a patronage appointment made under a system that allows the Prime Minister to appoint whomever he pleases depending on what he wants done.

Does the Prime Minister not find it unacceptable, as much for the sake of the Supreme Court's credibility as for that of the judicial system, that the members of the highest court in the land are appointed by a single person without any sort of public consultation?