House of Commons Hansard #143 of the 36th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was agency.

Topics

Committees Of The House
Routine Proceedings

11:10 a.m.

NDP

Peter Stoffer Sackville—Eastern Shore, NS

Mr. Speaker, the junior minister of fisheries and oceans was quoted as saying we now have much better observer reports from the foreigners. Has the junior minister ever seen a foreign observer report? I would put it that he never has. How do we know they are worth anything?

He also said that the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans received a conservation award from the Atlantic Salmon Federation. The fact is that the department which he runs gave the federation $6 million, and a few months later the minister got an award from the same people he gave the money to. He literally bought that award. It has nothing to do with conservation.

The government is concerned about recommendation No. 9 on foreign observer reports. Have we ever seen a foreign observer report? We have not. Has the government ever seen a foreign observer report?

Committees Of The House
Routine Proceedings

11:10 a.m.

Reform

Gary Lunn Saanich—Gulf Islands, BC

Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member from Nova Scotia for reminding me to talk about the observer reports to which the junior minister of fisheries and oceans has referred. He said saying that we had all these wonderful observer reports with which to write this report.

The fact is that we were denied access to them. We put a motion to the committee asking for observer reports. We made numerous requests through the chair who was fired for demanding the observer reports. The government offered the reports to us in camera. It said it would give the reports to us in secret but we could not let the Canadian people see them because there was a lot of stuff it did not want Canadians to see.

We were not given the observer reports. The Government of Canada kept them secret. Why? It was because they are ineffective. We later learned that the observers on foreign vessels were coming from the nations where the vessels came from. They report when they get back to the port of their flag country. They are meaningless and the government would not release those reports.

The ones we obtained where we actually had some input contained numerous violations by foreign states in Canadian waters of which the Government of Canada was aware. What did we learn? We learned there was no way the government would prosecute them or pursue them.

We never saw the observer reports to which the junior minister of fisheries and oceans refers. That is all on the record.

Committees Of The House
Routine Proceedings

11:10 a.m.

Liberal

Wayne Easter Malpeque, PE

You were offered them and you refused them.

Committees Of The House
Routine Proceedings

11:10 a.m.

Reform

Gary Lunn Saanich—Gulf Islands, BC

We were offered them in a secret meeting. The member is yelling at me from the other side of the House, saying that we were offered the reports. Yes, we were, in camera, which means in secret. We were not supposed to let anybody else know what was in them because the government was embarrassed and did not want them in the public domain. That is appalling.

Committees Of The House
Routine Proceedings

11:15 a.m.

Liberal

Marlene Catterall Ottawa West—Nepean, ON

Mr. Speaker, I have to say I was stunned to hear the member for Sackville—Eastern Shore bring this issue up again today.

First, the House just dealt with it last week and voted on it last week.

Second, the NDP had a full opposition day last week. If this is such an important issue to the member for Sackville—Eastern Shore and to his colleagues in the New Democratic Party, they would have made this the subject of a full day of debate in the House of Commons.

We are known as Canadians for being somewhat self-effacing, but I am not sure why the member for Sackville—Eastern Shore has to be so self-effacing as to suggest that this country should not be proud that the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans was awarded the conservation award of the Atlantic Salmon Federation and has to somehow suggest that the minister did not deserve that award.

As Canadians of course we do not think any of us deserve any recognition. Personally I and my colleagues are proud of the minister for having won that recognition.

Members may interpret this somewhat as picking on the member for Sackville—Eastern Shore today. But I was astonished as well to hear this member suggest that the only people in the House with courage and daring are those who happen to have certain male appendages. I do not, but I consider myself pretty daring and pretty gutsy.

Committees Of The House
Routine Proceedings

11:15 a.m.

NDP

Peter Stoffer Sackville—Eastern Shore, NS

Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I have the greatest respect for the member, but the fact is I did withdraw that statement.

Committees Of The House
Routine Proceedings

11:15 a.m.

Liberal

Marlene Catterall Ottawa West—Nepean, ON

Mr. Speaker, I recognize completely that the member withdrew his statement.

Given the circumstances, I move:

That the House do now proceed to orders of the day.

Committees Of The House
Routine Proceedings

11:15 a.m.

Reform

Randy White Langley—Abbotsford, BC

Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. Actually the Liberals are quite incorrect. This is an important issue and we do have members here who are concerned about the east coast fishery. I would like to ask—

Committees Of The House
Routine Proceedings

11:15 a.m.

The Acting Speaker (Mr. McClelland)

That is really a question of debate. We have a motion on the floor so we have to deal with that before we deal with any subsequent questions.

Committees Of The House
Routine Proceedings

11:15 a.m.

Reform

Gary Lunn Saanich—Gulf Islands, BC

Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. The hon. government deputy whip stood when you resumed debate, gave a wonderful speech and talked about the member from Nova Scotia. I believe we should get 10 minutes of questions and comments following that.

Committees Of The House
Routine Proceedings

11:15 a.m.

The Acting Speaker (Mr. McClelland)

That is not a point of order.

Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?

Committees Of The House
Routine Proceedings

11:15 a.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed

Committees Of The House
Routine Proceedings

11:15 a.m.

Some hon. members

No.

Committees Of The House
Routine Proceedings

11:15 a.m.

The Acting Speaker (Mr. McClelland)

All those in favour of the motion will please say yea.

Committees Of The House
Routine Proceedings

11:15 a.m.

Some hon. members

Yea.