Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to discuss a question that I asked a few weeks ago about the Office of the Public Sector Integrity Commissioner.
The commissioner's office has been in a state of upheaval for several months now, since the Auditor General presented a very damning report on its operations and its previous commissioner, who has since resigned.
The mission of the commissioner's office is very clear: to ensure that public servants are able to speak out about any abuse, fraud or wrongdoing that is harmful to the government and the people of Canada.
This was still a fiasco. The commissioner's office was in operation for three years before the Auditor General presented her report. Over those three years, 228 complaints were received but only five of them were lightly investigated. In the end, no charges were laid in any case nor was any follow-up conducted. From 228 to zero—it is not very impressive. The government claims to be open, transparent and accountable. Where is that accountability? How is it that the Conservative government has done absolutely nothing since the Office of the Public Sector Integrity Commissioner was established?
In its place, after a year, I would have wondered why no complaint ever progressed. After two years, I would have asked myself some serious questions about the work done by the Office of the Public Sector Integrity Commissioner. Three years without a complaint progressing means that something is not right. Maybe that is what the Conservative government wanted. The government was expecting the commissioner to ensure that there were no complaints, as though everything were fine with the federal government, as though everything were fine with the Conservatives. Now we see that that is not the case.
The Conservatives dropped the ball. They let three years ago by without a single complaint making it to the next step. What kind of deal did the commissioner's office and the government have? What did the Conservative government want? They wanted to ensure that none of the complaints went anywhere, which is rather incredible. As if by chance, cases of fraud went nowhere. One has to wonder.
That is one of the reasons why it is important that the former commissioner appear before the Standing Committee on Public Accounts. I believe that the parliamentary secretary will say that they did great things and that the commissioner will certainly come meet with members of Parliament. The reality is that no fraud or wrongdoing was reported. In the end, none of the complaints went anywhere. How can government officials and the public trust in a system that cost over $11 million and did not produce any results? It is unbelievable. That is money that the Conservatives wasted, money that many individuals and families could have used.