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House of Commons Hansard #36 of the 37th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was children.

Topics

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Bonavista—Trinity—Conception Newfoundland & Labrador

Liberal

Brian Tobin LiberalMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, in response to the member's question, the answer to that specific question is no, the Prime Minister's Office did not make any request.

Let me say further to the member and for the information of the House that last week I asked the deputy minister of industry to take control of this file and not to have either any member of my staff or myself involved in the discharge of the work of the directorship branch.

The deputy minister of industry is a man of integrity. For three years he was the chief of staff of the Conservative leader in the House of Commons.

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Pierre Brien Bloc Témiscamingue, QC

Mr. Speaker, will the Minister of Industry confirm that before the changes recently made to the books of the golf club, one of the names on the shareholders' register was that of the Prime Minister?

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Bonavista—Trinity—Conception Newfoundland & Labrador

Liberal

Brian Tobin LiberalMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, I will have to say it again. The work of the directorate is being carried out under the supervision of the deputy minister. The deputy minister for three years was the chief of staff to the leader of the Conservative Party and for two years the chief of staff to the former deputy prime minister under the last Conservative government.

No directions have been given, none whatsoever. Business is being conducted as usual. When the work is finished the normal information will be posted for all the public to see.

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Val Meredith Canadian Alliance South Surrey—White Rock—Langley, BC

Mr. Speaker, I think the House has reason to have this matter clarified. I would like to ask the Prime Minister again if he would table the income tax records for J&AC Consultants for the year 1993.

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the relevant documents are the bill of sale and the transfer of the sale. The income tax return has nothing to do with it.

As to when the document will be made public, we said that in 1996 Mr. Prince had not paid the shares so at that time we were not paid. My lawyer, who is my trustee at the same time, took the steps that were necessary in discussion with Mr. Wilson, who said that in front of the committee last year. The deputy prime minister informed the House last year too that they were working with Prince to make sure—

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for South Surrey—White Rock—Langley.

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Val Meredith Canadian Alliance South Surrey—White Rock—Langley, BC

Mr. Speaker, there is a concern that this might have been a sale of convenience, and I think to clarify the issue it would be appropriate for the Prime Minister to table the income tax returns for 1993 for J&AC Consultants.

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

This is a fishing expedition, Mr. Speaker. I put all my assets in trust. J&AC is a family company from which I resigned as director.

The lawyer became an executive director of the company. She made all the relevant decisions. She was completely authorized to do that. She was doing that on her own, making her own judgments after consultation with the commissioner and informing me because the debt was not subject, as Mr. Wilson said, to conflict of interest but she treated it the same way—

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Beauport—Montmorency—Côte-de-Beaupré—Île-d'Orléans.

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Guimond Bloc Beauport—Montmorency—Côte-De- Beaupré—Île-D'Orléans, QC

Mr. Speaker, last Friday, we learned that the Prime Minister had spoken to Mélissa Marcotte and apparently encouraged her to speak to the media to clear his name.

Can the Prime Minister explain why he asked Mélissa Marcotte to come to his defence, rather than tabling the documents, as we have been asking him to do for two years?

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I have never spoken to Mélissa Marcotte, at least not for years. I did not speak to her last week, or the week before that. She is the daughter of one of my partners in 1993, when I sold my shares. I did not speak to her. I did not ask her to do anything at all. You saw her on television. She was harassed by journalists—

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh.

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Liberal Saint-Maurice, QC

She said so herself. I saw her on television. I am not the one saying so.

What I am saying is that I maintain, once again, from my place, as I have always done—

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

The Speaker

The member for Beauport—Montmorency—Côte-de-Beaupré—Île-d'Orléans.

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Guimond Bloc Beauport—Montmorency—Côte-De- Beaupré—Île-D'Orléans, QC

Mr. Speaker, I am going to try to find someone else who was apparently harassed.

How does the Prime Minister explain the actions of Bruce Hartley, his advisor, who asked Mélissa Marcotte to change her testimony so as not to reveal that the Prime Minister had been a shareholder in the Grand-Mère golf club?

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I said this earlier, but they are not listening, because they have their questions prepared before they come to the House and they are not quick enough to change them themselves.

I repeat that at 7 a.m. on Friday, Mélissa Marcotte asked to speak to me, having been made aware of the allegations in the National Post . Mr. Hartley, who works for me, said that I was not available. She spoke with Mr. Hartley, not the reverse. It was she who spoke to Mr. Hartley, and Mr. Hartley, who is a polite man—

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh.

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Peace River.

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Charlie Penson Canadian Alliance Peace River, AB

Mr. Speaker, on Tuesday of last week the industry minister sent officials to examine the corporate registry of the Grand-Mère golf course.

He has had almost a week now to read the few pages that were given to him. I know he has been trying to distance himself from this file in the last couple of questions in question period, but could he now disclose the registry documents and tell the House whether any or all federal laws have been complied with and whether anything has been altered in those records?

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Bonavista—Trinity—Conception Newfoundland & Labrador

Liberal

Brian Tobin LiberalMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, the director, Mr. Richard Shaw, has informed the deputy minister that he will shortly be completing his examination of the corporate records of 161341 Canada Inc. Once that information is completed, a letter will be sent in response to the ethics counsellor from whom the request came in the first place.

However let me say something. There has not been one piece of new information here today. The fact remains that the ethics counsellor has examined the matter. The police has opened and closed the books. What we have here is an attempt to smear. There is not one new piece of information. Members opposite should get back to the business of Canada and stop the business of smearing a Prime Minister who has done no wrong.

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Charlie Penson Canadian Alliance Peace River, AB

Mr. Speaker, what a complicated web they weave. It was reported that Jonas Prince's role was not one of a shareholder but essentially to serve as a parking place to buy the Prime Minister time to sell his shares.

If the Prime Minister's lawyer was trying to sell the shares for the Prime Minister, how could the Prime Minister say that Jonas Prince owned them?

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Bonavista—Trinity—Conception Newfoundland & Labrador

Liberal

Brian Tobin LiberalMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, there is a very simple reason why the Prime Minister and everyone else have looked at this and said that Mr. Jonas Prince owned the shares. He bought them in November 1993.

Foreign AffairsOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Bryon Wilfert Liberal Oak Ridges, ON

Mr. Speaker, Canada has recently announced re-engagement with India. There are concerns that our engagement with India will lead to further isolation of Pakistan and increase the possibility of destabilization of the sub-Indian continent.

Could the Secretary of State for Asia-Pacific affairs clarify for the House Canada's current policy toward the government in Islamabad?

Foreign AffairsOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Winnipeg North—St. Paul Manitoba

Liberal

Rey D. Pagtakhan LiberalSecretary of State (Asia-Pacific)

Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for his question. Canada does not wish to isolate Pakistan. We know there is a need for political stability and the absence of nuclear proliferation in that region.

In fact Canada has pursued a policy of selective engagement on a bilateral and multilateral basis since Pakistan tested its nuclear weapons in 1998 followed by a military coup in 1999.

We believe that selective engagement will allow Canada to help Pakistan in the transition to a stable economy and sustainable democracy.

MulticulturalismOral Question Period

March 26th, 2001 / 2:45 p.m.

NDP

Peter Stoffer NDP Sackville—Musquodoboit Valley—Eastern Shore, NS

Mr. Speaker, for years now the Solicitor General of Canada has been saying that government does not interfere in police investigations before, during or after.

We now have newspaper reports that indicate that the Secretary of State for Multiculturalism and her staff have been contacting RCMP officials regarding racism activities in British Columbia.

My question is for the Prime Minister. What she has done to the House and to the people of Prince George is absolutely scandalous. Her apology is not good enough. What ethical leadership will the Prime Minister show in the House to discipline that member for what she said to the good people of Prince George?