House of Commons Hansard #149 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was first.

Topics

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Joe Clark Calgary Centre, AB

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Foreign Affairs.

A consul general of Canada requires the highest security clearance, particularly in a post like Chandigarh.

The government will not say when Bhupinder Liddar received his Canadian citizenship. It says that is a privacy question.

I have some security questions. Does Mr. Liddar have Canada's highest security clearance? If not, how could he serve as consul general? If so, was Mr. Liddar a Canadian citizen at the time the process began to give him security clearance?

Does the government often arrange security clearance for people who are not Canadian citizens?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Bourassa
Québec

Liberal

Denis Coderre Minister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, without going into details on this particular case, I can assure the House that all the rules were followed and that all the criteria were met. The consul general in Chandigarh will do an excellent job.

Fisheries
Oral Question Period

November 3rd, 2003 / 2:45 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Rex Barnes Gander—Grand Falls, NL

Mr. Speaker, I am not aware that ACOA is a threat to our national security so I am puzzled about the secrecy regarding ACOA funding for a Newfoundland and Labrador riding with regard to the cod closures.

Will the hon. Minister of State responsible for ACOA provide full disclosure to the House within 24 hours of all projects approved and applied for, as well as the criteria and departmental evaluation?

Did the minister give orders for ACOA representatives not to talk to Newfoundland and Labrador MPs with regard to these projects?

Fisheries
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Humber—St. Barbe—Baie Verte
Newfoundland & Labrador

Liberal

Gerry Byrne Minister of State (Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency)

Mr. Speaker, with the new innovations in the House the member can get that information right from his chair in the House of Commons because it is all on the Internet, which we have now introduced into the House.

The fact is that the hon. member is very aware of all the projects that are occurring in his riding, despite the fact that he said that there was an air of secrecy around them.

I remember not too long ago telling the hon. member about a particular project in Little Bay Islands, one that all of a sudden, when asked by the media, he had no knowledge of whatsoever.

That $575,000 will be of great benefit to his riding, but most important, to the people of his riding.

International Trade
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Alexa McDonough Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister is about to meet here in Ottawa with South Africa's president, Thabo Mbeki.

Mbeki was instrumental in the WTO agreement to allow generic drugs to flow to developing nations to treat the millions suffering from HIV-AIDS, TB, malaria and other deadly diseases.

Canada engaged in much self-congratulations about being the first country to amend our patent laws but the world is still waiting.

With rumours about a UN appointment for the Prime Minister, he should be more committed than ever to implementing this legacy.

Will the Prime Minister promise that Parliament will not rise until this life saving legacy is firmly in place?

International Trade
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Denis
Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew Minister for International Trade

Mr. Speaker, I can tell the hon. member that the Prime Minister has been fully committed to Africa for the last few years that he has been Prime Minister.

We in Canada have worked very closely with South Africa to develop the August 30 breakthrough with a waiver on intellectual property.

We intend to do the same thing in this country. We will make sure that in consultation with our industry we can allow Canadian companies to contribute to this extraordinary effort in Africa.

Canada-U.S. Border
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Brian Masse Windsor West, ON

Mr. Speaker, the city of Windsor has discovered that CP Rail, in conjunction with Transport Canada and Canada Customs, is building a centre for U.S. customs to inspect rail cars going to the U.S. on Canadian soil. With no notification and no planning, it will create more transportation chaos for our industry, health and security. I understand that the Manley-Ridge plan is the driving force for this process.

Could the Deputy Prime Minister explain why the municipality or local industry was not consulted? Will he meet with them immediately and put this on hold before we have more chaos and border destruction affecting our industries?

Canada-U.S. Border
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Thornhill
Ontario

Liberal

Elinor Caplan Minister of National Revenue

Mr. Speaker, pre-clearance away from the border, whether it is for land or rail, is one of the important features of trying to have the border function safely and efficiently. All these initiatives have been undertaken to ensure that the public interest in Canada is served. I can assure the member opposite the actions that are being taken are both appropriate and well considered.

Veterans Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Roy H. Bailey Souris—Moose Mountain, SK

Mr. Speaker, November 5 through to November 11 is Veterans Week in Canada. It is a week to honour those who fought and died for this country, but the government refuses to honour war widows by not extending their VIP benefits.

The parliamentary secretary for veterans affairs said on Friday:

--I would like to honour that request. However, things do not operate that way around here.

The 23,000 widows who are cut off from other benefits deserve a lot better than that. Will this government today honour the commitment to the--

Veterans Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. Minister of Veterans Affairs.

Veterans Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Winnipeg North—St. Paul
Manitoba

Liberal

Rey D. Pagtakhan Minister of Veterans Affairs and Secretary of State (Science

Mr. Speaker, we have been seized with this issue. In fact, as recently as last May, when we had $135 million, we decided to take half of that for other priorities of veterans and the other half for widows in the country. We started a new program, and we pledged that we would continue to work harder for others. The sensitivity of this government remains very high.

Veterans Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Roy H. Bailey Souris—Moose Mountain, SK

Mr. Speaker, we have already had unanimous consent from the Veterans Affairs committee. We have had unanimous consent from this House, but still the government delays. To continue to deny these 23,000 widows is hypocrisy higher than the ceiling of this building.

Will this government commit to extending the VIP benefits to those widows and ensure that it is done before November 11, 2003?

Veterans Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Winnipeg North—St. Paul
Manitoba

Liberal

Rey D. Pagtakhan Minister of Veterans Affairs and Secretary of State (Science

Mr. Speaker, last May, when we had the situation, I consulted with the leadership of the veterans organizations and I asked them if we should proceed with what we had or should we wait. They advised me to proceed with what we had, and we pledged to continue to work harder for the others.

Minister of Finance
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Yvan Loubier Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, QC

Mr. Speaker, last week, the Minister of Finance stated that he had paid for his trip to the Caribbean and his holiday aboard a sailboat with Sandy Morrison of the Brewers Association of Canada, whose counsel he had just followed in his budget at the expense of the microbreweries. The minister told the House that he had paid for his plane tickets.

Can the Minister of Finance tell the House how much it cost for him and his family to stay on this luxury boat, and in what amount the cheque in repayment was made out for?

Minister of Finance
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Ottawa South
Ontario

Liberal

John Manley Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, that is none of his business. I can go on vacation with whomever I like, wherever I want, at my own expense. He has no right to ask such questions.