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House of Commons Hansard #31 of the 38th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was ukrainian.

Topics

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Ajax—Pickering has the floor.

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Mark Holland Liberal Ajax—Pickering, ON

Mr. Speaker, they might be proud of saying our military is not proud. I am proud of our military, I am proud of what they did in Haiti, and I would like to ask the Minister of National Defence if he can reassure this House of the proud role that our military plays around the world.

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Toronto Centre Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham LiberalMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, I am very grateful for the question because I think it is important that the opposition not allow opposition rhetoric to obscure the pride that we have in our military, the pride that we have in the roles they played in Afghanistan, in Haiti and in Bosnia.

When I go and see our young troops, our men and women, I hear them say, “We want to be deployed overseas. We want to work for Canada. We want to bring Canada to the world the way the world wants Canada”. I am proud of our military. Our party is proud of our military. I think we should all be proud of our military instead of trying to use it as a political football the way the opposition does.

UkraineOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton NDP Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, we would like to congratulate the government for its decision not to recognize the results of the fraudulent election in Ukraine. We would point out that other countries seem to be prepared to take further steps. We would hope that the Government of Canada would take steps to indicate solidarity with the people of Ukraine, who have had their democratic rights denied. I hope that will be done in consultation with the Ukrainian community here in Canada.

Could the government inform us of what some of the steps might be that it is considering at this time to back up Canada's decision?

UkraineOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Pickering—Scarborough East Ontario

Liberal

Dan McTeague LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the hon. member for the question but I also want to point out that the hon. member only 35 minutes ago witnessed solidarity in the House in purpose on the Ukrainian people and the plight they find themselves in at this point.

We will work with the international community and show the same solidarity that exists in the House of Commons to work with our partners to ensure that there is international opprobrium for the actions that have taken place in Ukraine.

I can assure the hon. member that we will consult with all Canadians. Perhaps there will be an opportunity, Mr. Speaker, to have a formal debate in the House, perhaps as early as this evening, with your permission.

Child PovertyOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton NDP Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, we welcome these initiatives and look forward to assisting in any way we can.

I want to congratulate the member for Ottawa Centre for standing to raise the issue of child poverty. Fifteen years ago in the House, with the unanimous support of all parties, he raised that issue and there was a commitment to reduce child poverty in this country.

What we have seen instead are targets for debt reduction and for every other kind of economic objective except the reduction of child poverty. We now have more than a million children living in poverty and we have disgraceful answers from the government. Will the finance minister allocate some resources?

Child PovertyOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale LiberalMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, indeed, all Canadians will be deeply troubled by the reports of the statistics with respect to child poverty. We have taken steps in the past, and very important steps. The creation of the child tax benefit, which is on its way to rising to the value of $10 billion a year, is a major initiative. The initiative being led by the Minister of Social Development to drastically expand our child care system is another initiative. We are working on homelessness issues, on housing issues, on jobs and employment and improving employment insurance. On all of those fronts, we will not rest until this job is done.

Agriculture and Agri-FoodOral Question Period

November 24th, 2004 / 2:50 p.m.

Conservative

Diane Finley Conservative Haldimand—Norfolk, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Liberals are getting bogged down in the mad cow issue and leaving the dairy farmers to fend for themselves.

Today they must resort to radical actions in order to get the attention of the contemptuous Liberal government.

Why is the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food letting the situation go from bad to worse and taking no action on the crisis?

Agriculture and Agri-FoodOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Liberal

Andy Mitchell LiberalMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Mr. Speaker, quite to the contrary, as I said in answer to the many questions that the Bloc has directed at us in the last couple of days, we have provided some $366 million to Quebec producers under business risk management and additional money in terms of BSE.

As I have said on many occasions, there is a specific issue with dairy cull cows. We are dealing with that issue. There is a range of options on how that could be done. Part of it could be through the pricing that is about to be announced in respect of milk. Others have mentioned a minimum price. There are other initiatives we may want to undertake. We are in discussions at this moment, figuring out the best way to do it.

Agriculture and Agri-FoodOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

Diane Finley Conservative Haldimand—Norfolk, ON

Mr. Speaker, day after day, the minister repeats the same refrain. The dairy producers of Quebec have had enough of being held hostage by a single slaughterhouse. They are forced to sell their animals at terrible prices to a virtual monopoly.

Is the minister dragging his feet in this file in order to protect the interests of the Colbex-Levinoff group, because they contributed $45,000 to Liberal coffers?

Agriculture and Agri-FoodOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Liberal

Andy Mitchell LiberalMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Mr. Speaker, that is absolutely ludicrous. I would suggest that they stop playing politics and start helping producers. The reality is that we put forward a $38 million program that will assist in building new slaughter capacity so that there can be a competitive environment that will allow there to be a reasonable marketplace in Quebec and elsewhere in this country.

Indian Affairs and Northern DevelopmentOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

Jim Prentice Conservative Calgary North Centre, AB

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the Auditor General again reported discrepancies between the information provided by the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development to the Treasury Board. The auditor reported that the department lacked procedures to ensure accountability of proper spending contrary to what it told Treasury Board.

The report also criticized the department for not providing Parliament with the complete picture on $1.4 billion of expenditures on aboriginal education programs.

Why has the department misled Treasury Board? Why has the department not been forthright with Parliament and when will the minister come clean?

Indian Affairs and Northern DevelopmentOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Fredericton New Brunswick

Liberal

Andy Scott LiberalMinister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development and Federal Interlocutor for Métis and Non-Status Indians

Mr. Speaker, as I said in response to a question from the member for Halifax yesterday, the Auditor General has pointed out that the gap remains unacceptable between aboriginal Canadians and non-aboriginal Canadians. That is the position the Government of Canada holds as well.

That is the reason we are working with first nations today in different parts of the country to make sure that we work together with the community to solve the problem because we will not solve it for them.

Métis Nation of SaskatchewanOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

Maurice Vellacott Conservative Saskatoon—Wanuskewin, SK

Mr. Speaker, after the May 26 Métis election in Saskatchewan the provincial government commissioned former provincial chief electoral officer Keith Lampard to investigate.

Following the release of his damning report that found the Métis election was neither fair nor democratic, the Saskatchewan government froze the $400,000 a year it has contributed to the Métis Nation of Saskatchewan. The Métis Nation of Saskatchewan however is still receiving more than $500,000 a year from the heritage department.

After Lampard's report, why is the federal government still continuing to financially support a group which is illegitimately holding political office?

Métis Nation of SaskatchewanOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Jeanne-Le Ber Québec

Liberal

Liza Frulla LiberalMinister of Canadian Heritage and Minister responsible for Status of Women

Mr. Speaker, the issue of the Métis is of great concern to us. It is true that there was a problem with the election, but on the other hand, we do not want to let the community down. Perhaps I will be able to provide more detailed explanations to the hon. member.

Governor GeneralOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Louise Thibault Bloc Rimouski—Témiscouata, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is the same story every year. It is impossible to get a clear picture and to know exactly how much is allocated to the functions of the Governor General, because amounts are spread here and there in the budgets of various departments. Last year, the costs associated with the activities of the Governor General and her office totalled $41.2 million.

Could the President of the Treasury Board tell us how many million dollars it will be this year? We want to know exactly how much the Governor General is costing us overall, without having to search through all the different departments.

Governor GeneralOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Winnipeg South Manitoba

Liberal

Reg Alcock LiberalPresident of the Treasury Board and Minister responsible for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, the member raises a very interesting and important question.

I was impressed by the hearing that the committee held yesterday when this was raised with the Auditor General. I frankly was very impressed with the openness of the Auditor General's staff in trying to answer these questions.

It is true the different parts of the Auditor General's expenses, particularly her travel expenses, are paid out of different budgets. We discussed the dilemma in pulling that together and I undertook to work with the committee to provide that information.

Governor GeneralOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Bloc

Louise Thibault Bloc Rimouski—Témiscouata, QC

Mr. Speaker, to know how much the Prime Minister's company received in government contracts, we have had to ask the Auditor General, in order to get the figures quickly and punctually.

I will ask the President of the Treasury Board this: Will we have to once again ask the Auditor General to go over the budgets of the various departments and agencies in order to provide us with the grand total as soon as possible?

Governor GeneralOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Winnipeg South Manitoba

Liberal

Reg Alcock LiberalPresident of the Treasury Board and Minister responsible for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, I should start by saying I think I just referred to the Auditor General rather than the Governor General. It is the Governor General's funding we are talking about.

The simple answer to the question is no. As we discussed at some length in the committee yesterday, the public service modernization process that we are engaged in and which was announced in the budget is to do exactly what the member is requesting. It is to put in place a modern expenditure management information system that allows us to answer these questions quickly and easily and make it entirely transparent for the members of the House and the citizens of Canada.

HealthOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Conservative

Steven Fletcher Conservative Charleswood—St. James, MB

Mr. Speaker, yesterday Canadians lost more faith in the government after the release of another Auditor General's report on Liberal waste and mismanagement.

Health Canada paid 400% more for certain drugs and spending increased by $88 million over the past two years.

The Auditor General points out that Health Canada has been warned on three previous occasions about the waste in the drug programs.

How can the minister explain the incompetence and mismanagement of these federal drug programs?

HealthOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Vancouver South B.C.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh LiberalMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, the recommendations that the Auditor General makes are very important. I met with the Auditor General. I have discussed the recommendations. We accept all of them fully. In fact, I have asked my department, as it implements those recommendations, to consult with her on a regular basis so that our implementation of the recommendations meets with her approval.

Air Transportation SecurityOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Conservative

Rob Nicholson Conservative Niagara Falls, ON

Mr. Speaker, last week we learned that the Liberal government made a $234 million profit taxing air travellers for security. At the same time we know that Transport Canada charged our airports $256 million for rent. This is outrageous. This hurts airports. It hurts airlines. It is bad for business and it is bad for tourism. The worst part is that the Canadian air traveller has to pick up the tab for everything.

When are the Liberals going to learn that every service is not an opportunity for the Liberal government to make money? When will they stop gouging taxpayers and reduce airport rents?

Air Transportation SecurityOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Outremont Québec

Liberal

Jean Lapierre LiberalMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, this subject is very important to us all and to everybody who is involved in the air transportation business. That is why I am in close consultation with my colleague the Minister of Finance. I hope that this issue is going to be taken seriously. I agree that we have to do something on it. We are going to be moving on it.

SudanOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Liberal

Navdeep Bains Liberal Mississauga—Brampton South, ON

Mr. Speaker, as the House knows, the Prime Minister will be travelling to Khartoum to meet with Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir.

As we all know, over 70,000 people have died and over 1.5 million people have been displaced from their homes in the Darfur region of Sudan. Can we be assured that the Prime Minister will confront the Sudanese president about the continuing human rights violations in Darfur? Especially, will the Prime Minister highlight the Sudanese president's lack of commitment toward stopping the vicious Janjaweed militia?