Mr. Speaker, I rise to commemorate the 86th anniversary of the Holodomor, the famine genocide in Ukraine in 1932-1933. Nineteen people per minute, 1,200 per hour and 28,000 per day were dying of famine at the height of the Holodomor. The world was silent and millions died as a result.
My grandmother Olena was a survivor of the Holodomor and she once told me that she hoped that the victims of the Holodomor would not only be remembered but that they would be honoured. Honouring them, she said, meant not just remembering them, but learning the mistakes of the Holodomor and taking steps to make sure a crime like this would never happen again.
Unfortunately, recently a University of Alberta lecturer, Dougal MacDonald, did just the opposite. He denied the existence of the Holodomor and he called it a “lie” and a “myth”. I join the calls of the Ukrainian Canadian Congress, the Ukrainian Canadian Students' Union and thousands of Canadians who have called on the university to take significant and meaningful action against this genocide denial.
Let us do as my grandmother would have asked if she were here today. Let us remember the victims, let us commemorate the victims, let us honour them.
Vichna yim pamyat.