House of Commons Hansard #17 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was voters.

Topics

Airbus
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Robert Thibault West Nova, NS

Mr. Speaker, in March the Prime Minister's Office received serious allegations about the Mulroney-Schreiber affair and now he blames the Privy Council Office for the cover-up.

Does it make sense that a few weeks later the Privy Council would send the Prime Minister to deliver a tribute at an embassy dinner to honour the Rt. Hon. Brian Mulroney? The PCO put out a media advisory, a press release and even published the speech on the government website.

Are Canadians supposed to believe the Privy Council would send the Prime Minister off to praise Brian Mulroney and not warn him about the serious allegations of abuse?

Airbus
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla
B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, the office of the Prime Minister does not engage in letter writing campaigns with individuals who are facing a variety of charges.

I will say, and it is now a matter of public record, that immediately upon receiving a signed affidavit by Mr. Schreiber of certain allegations, the Prime Minister and this government took action. We will see a process in place, leading to a full public inquiry to explore all of the questions that need to be answered.

Airbus
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Robert Thibault West Nova, NS

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister was not the only government member celebrating Mr. Mulroney. There were 14 cabinet ministers, including the Minister of Transport.

The current defence minister regaled all with a toast. The Prime Minister's speech that night said, “effective leaders in due time are recognized and rewarded. So it is with Mr. Mulroney”: $300,000 worth.

How are Canadians supposed to believe PCO would approve the speech, but not brief the Prime Minister or his staff about the very serious allegations?

Airbus
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla
B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, immediately upon receiving a signed affidavit from Mr. Schreiber about certain allegations, the Prime Minister and the government launched what will lead to a full public inquiry.

I think the member opposite should exercise some caution. I understand he may have received some letters already about certain things he has said, and he should be careful.

Airbus
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Pablo Rodriguez Honoré-Mercier, QC

Mr. Speaker, in February 1998, when Brian Mulroney met with Karlheinz Schreiber at a hotel in Zurich, Switzerland, who was with him? The Minister of Transport's chief of staff, Paul Terrien.

Now that we know that, can the government assure us that it will not limit the inquiry's mandate simply to protect the Minister of Transport's chief of staff from having to testify under oath as to what really happened that day?

Airbus
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla
B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, anybody who knows and has seen the record of Professor Johnston knows that he is not the type of individual who will be restricted, nor have restrictions been put on him.

What we will see is a very full and public inquiry along the guidelines that he will suggest. We fully expect that all the way along we will hear ridiculous and bizarre assertions from across the way. However, we will be looking for this full public inquiry and we will be looking for the answers it brings forward.

Airbus
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Pablo Rodriguez Honoré-Mercier, QC

What we hear are ridiculous answers, Mr. Speaker.

When Mr. Schreiber indicated to the Prime Minister's Office that he had made an agreement with Brian Mulroney before he left public life, this government tried to cover up the affair for months.

This begs the question. Did the chief of staff for the Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities, Paul Terrien, play a role in this cover-up operation?

In fact, is the government trying as much as possible to limit the mandate of the public inquiry in order to cover up the role played by Mr. Terrien in this whole affair?

Airbus
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla
B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, in my opinion, it is clear that hon. members are disappointed because we are now proceeding with a public inquiry. And we will get answers.

It is very important to acknowledge that it was the Prime Minister and the Government of Canada that asked for a public inquiry. And that is exactly what we will have with the suggestion of Mr. Johnston.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

November 15th, 2007 / 2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Claude Bachand Saint-Jean, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, the Minister of Foreign Affairs said in this House, “We have no evidence of systematic torture of detainees”.

The minister is therefore admitting that there is torture in Afghan prisons, but since it is not systematic, it is not too serious.

I want to remind the minister, who should know this article, that article 12 of the Geneva convention clearly stipulates that prisoners may not be transferred to a country that engages in torture. Yet it continues, whether it is systemic or not.

Does the Prime Minister realize that his government is systematically violating the Geneva convention when it continues—

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

I am sorry to have to interrupt the hon. member for Saint-Jean.

The hon. Minister of Foreign Affairs.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Beauce
Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I recently wrote to my counterpart in Afghanistan, the foreign minister, to formally ask that serious, formal, exhaustive investigations be launched into these allegations of abuse.

I want to inform the House that this morning, I had a telephone discussion with my counterpart, the Afghan foreign minister, and he assured me that an investigation was under way into these allegations in Afghanistan. I have the assurance that my government could take part in this investigation, if necessary.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Claude Bachand Saint-Jean, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Canadian government initially claimed that this was Taliban propaganda, that the Taliban were making up stories and that there were no problems in Afghan prisons. Recently, President Karzai said there was a problem, and the Minister of Foreign Affairs admitted as much yesterday.

What is the Prime Minister waiting for to act? What is needed is not investigations, but action by the Prime Minister to suspend prisoner transfers immediately. He can no longer deny the facts. There are seven alleged cases of torture. What is he waiting for to act? He must act now.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Beauce
Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, we never said there were no challenges. There are always challenges, and we are working with the Afghan government.

Having said that, I am surprised that my colleague from Saint-Jean is rising to ask a question, because he has said, “Certainly for us, it is a promotion to go to the National Assembly. The future is in the National Assembly, not in Ottawa”.

If there is no future here in Ottawa, I suggest that my colleague from Saint-Jean do what his colleague from Saint-Lambert did and go talk to the Parti Québécois about becoming a PQ candidate.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

This minister is such a jerk!

Manufacturing Sector
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Paul Crête Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup, QC

Mr. Speaker, in the 1980s, the Bank of Canada's monetary policy, which was tailor-made to resolve Ontario's problems, had disastrous effects on Quebec's economy. Now the same thing is happening again, with the west reaping the benefits at the expense of the manufacturing sector.

Now that even the Bank of Canada is concerned about the devastating effects of the rising dollar on jobs in the manufacturing sector, will the Minister of Finance use his legal power to advise the governor to ensure that the latter's policies will not damage this key sector in Quebec?