Mr. Speaker, 41 years ago, in 1970, in Niamey, Niger, Canada played an active role in the founding of La Francophonie. In honour of that occasion, yesterday, on Sunday, March 20, Canada and the other members of La Francophonie celebrated International Day of La Francophonie.
French is spoken by more than 9.5 million Canadians and has played an important role in our history, our identity and our daily lives. As our Prime Minister often reminds us, Canada was founded in the language of Molière—in French.
French is still spoken in many communities in our country, from Acadians in the Maritimes, to Ontario and Saskatchewan. Of course, our language remains a strong symbol of our identity in all regions of Quebec, as in my riding, Beauport—Limoilou.