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House of Commons Hansard #73 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was peoples.

Topics

AfghanistanOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Paul Dewar NDP Ottawa Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, cheap shots aside, for the millions of Canadians who oppose the counter-insurgency mission, the issue is not whether to help Afghan people but how to do that. They have read the Manley report. They have read the reports from Oxfam and others that say the counter-insurgency method is not working. They know civilian death is up, corruption is up, poppy production is up. They want their country to pursue a path of peace and reconstruction, not counter-insurgency.

Instead of misreading public opinion, why will the government not acknowledge that Canadians have real and valid concerns with this war?

AfghanistanOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Central Nova Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay ConservativeMinister of National Defence and Minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

Mr. Speaker, when it comes to the representation of fact and the negativity, we know that it is up in the NDP as well.

However, what Canadians are impressed with is continuing reports of the progress that is occurring on the ground as a result of the important work of the Canadian Forces and our NATO and UN allies. We now have a UN representative in Afghanistan who will help coordinate some of this important work, so more schools, more medical care, more efforts to improve the quality of life of Afghans will continue.

That is what this government is interested in. That is what the allies are interested in. I wish the NDP would make a connection between security and the important development and humanitarian work that is happening there.

AirbusOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Brian Murphy Liberal Moncton—Riverview—Dieppe, NB

Mr. Speaker, the government is wilfully providing cover to Mr. Mulroney to hide his lobbying efforts on behalf of his business interests. It is doing the same by limiting the scope of the public inquiry.

We know a letter was sent to the former industry minister asking for a private meeting with Mr. Mulroney and Luc Lavoie to discuss the pending wireless legislation because Mr. Lavoie in his own words said, “The wireless piece was absolutely crucial to Quebecor's business strategy”.

Will the government table this letter or is it putting Mulroney's business interests ahead of the public's right to know?

AirbusOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Beauce Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier ConservativeMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, as I said in French previously, no meeting happened and the law has been followed. Those members are trying to find a scandal. They are trying to find a story where there is no story.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

April 7th, 2008 / 2:55 p.m.

Conservative

Chris Warkentin Conservative Peace River, AB

Mr. Speaker, in the last year, our government has massively expanded the Nahanni National Park Reserve and moved to protect the east arm of the Great Slave Lake and the ramparts rivers and wetlands, lands that are almost twice the size of Nova Scotia.

Environmental protection is one our government's priorities in our northern agenda. Could the Minister of the Environment tell the House what action our government took today to further protect the Nahanni watershed areas in the Northwest Territories?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, I was pleased to announce today that the Government of Canada was withdrawing some 7,600 square kilometres of significant natural lands in the upper South Nahanni watershed area, something that is unprecedented in the country. We are protecting an area of land one and a half times the size of Prince Edward Island from further development.

The creation of a new national park on Nahanni's boundaries is yet another example of our commitment to ensuring key parts of our north are protected for future generations. This conservation initiative is possible because of the government, the support of aboriginal people in this area and the territorial government.

I would like to particularly thank members of the Sahtu Dene First Nation, who joined us this morning at the Museum of Nature.

Step by step, we are getting the job done.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Francine Lalonde Bloc La Pointe-de-l'Île, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Canadian government continues to wash its hands of Omar Khadr's fate even though reports about his health are alarming. In light of the situation, several groups—including Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and the Canadian Bar Association—have appealed to the government, which has always claimed that he is well treated. We know this is not true. We know that he is a child soldier and that he should be brought back to Canada to be tried.

When will the minister decide to bring Omar Khadr back to Canada, to Quebec, to be tried as—

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

3 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

The hon. Minister of Foreign Affairs.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

3 p.m.

Beauce Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier ConservativeMinister of Foreign Affairs

As my colleague just mentioned, it is true that Mr. Khadr has been visited by my department's representatives on several occasions. It is true that we have received assurances from the American government that Mr. Khadr was not treated cruelly. It is also true that Mr. Khadr faces serious accusations.

As for asking for the release of Mr. Khadr, it is too early and too premature to do so because not all legal avenues of appeal have been exhausted.

Fitness Tax CreditOral Questions

3 p.m.

NDP

Wayne Marston NDP Hamilton East—Stoney Creek, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Conservative government claims that it wants to help average Canadian families afford the registration and equipment fees for their children's fitness through their tax credits. The Conservative government also claims that it wants to promote a healthier, more active lifestyle to fight childhood obesity. However, is the finance minister not aware that municipal programs only last an average of six weeks and the cut-off for the tax credit is eight weeks?

How does the minister expect Canadians to benefit from this tax credit when it is designed so they do not even qualify?

Fitness Tax CreditOral Questions

3 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty ConservativeMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the comments that I have heard from parents who are filing their tax returns is that they are very pleased to have the opportunity to make a claim for the children's fitness tax credit.

This is an important step forward in Canada for parents who incur expenses for their children to engage in active sporting activities, which I am sure the member would agree is of benefit for the children.

Fitness Tax CreditOral Questions

3 p.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Liberal Wascana, SK

Two dollars a week.

Fitness Tax CreditOral Questions

3 p.m.

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Conservative Whitby—Oshawa, ON

I know the member for Wascana would say it is not enough money, when his party did nothing for 13 years. At least we have moved forward and brought in a way for parents to help fight obesity in children, which is of great importance on a health basis.

AfghanistanOral Questions

3 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Order, please. There have been discussions among representatives of all parties in the House that we now rise and observe a moment of silence in honour of the fallen Canadian soldier in Afghanistan.

[A moment of silence observed]

Presence in GalleryOral Questions

3 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

I draw to the attention of hon. members the presence in the gallery of the Hon. Luke Ouellette, the Minister of Transportation for Alberta.

Presence in GalleryOral Questions

3 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear!

Presence in GalleryOral Questions

3 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

I also would like to draw to the attention of hon. members the presence in the gallery of the Hon. Ron MacKinley, Minister of Transportation and Public Works for Prince Edward Island.

Presence in GalleryOral Questions

3 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear!

GuelphVacancyOral Questions

3 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

It is my duty to inform the House that a vacancy has occurred in the representation, namely Mrs. Brenda Chamberlain, the hon. member for the electoral district of Guelph, by resignation effective today, April 7, 2008.

Pursuant to subsection 29 (50) (b) of the Parliament of Canada Act, I addressed, earlier today, a warrant to the Chief Electoral Officer for the issue of a writ for the election of a member to fill the vacancy.

Oral QuestionsPoints of OrderOral Questions

3 p.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Liberal Wascana, SK

Mr. Speaker, on Friday, the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration made some remarks in the House which conveyed the wrong impression and the minister had to withdraw those remarks and correct herself.

Today a similar incident has happened where the minister implied in one of her answers that the official opposition had opposed the proposal to increase the age of protection in Canada. In fact, the official opposition supported that measure.

I think the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration would want to similarly rise today as she did on Friday to correct the record and to make sure no wrong impression is left.

Oral QuestionsPoints of OrderOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, it is my recollection that, in this particular instance, the Liberal Party walked out of the House and did not vote for the motion.

Oral QuestionsPoints of OrderOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

In any event, it does strike me as being a matter of debate.

Schreiber-Mulroney Financial DealingsRoutine Proceedings

3:05 p.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister for Democratic Reform

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 32(2) I have the honour to table, in both official languages, the second report of the independent adviser into the allegations respecting financial dealings between Mr. Karlheinz Schreiber and the right hon. Brian Mulroney.

This report was received by the government on Friday. I am tabling it today and the government will be acting on it shortly.

Firearms ActRoutine Proceedings

3:05 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to subsection 93(2) of the Firearms Act, it is my pleasure to rise in the House today to table, in both official languages, the 2006 report of the Commissioner of Firearms on the administration of the Firearms Act for the period of January 1 to December 31, 2006.

Treaty on Transfer of OffendersRoutine Proceedings

3:05 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, under Standing Order 32(2) I have the pleasure to table, in both official languages, a treaty entitled “Treaty Between the Government of Canada and the Government of the Argentine Republic on the Transfer of Offenders”.