March 5, 1914

LIB

Georges Henri Boivin

Liberal

Mr. BOIVIN:

But they might have been contradicted. We have had affidavits read in this House and contradicted by contra-affidavits, and they have been considered

sufficient to vote down charges against Mr. NANTEL: Well, let us call them ministers in this House. solemn declarations.

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CON

Wilfrid Bruno Nantel (Minister of Inland Revenue)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. NANTEL:

I am sure these will not be contradicted.

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LIB

Lucien Turcotte Pacaud

Liberal

Mr. PACAUD:

I know Mr. Prefontaine personally very well, and I know that he has never taken part in politics since he was appointed to office. More than that, he is one of the most respected citizens in the county of Megantic. He is a Papal zouave, a Papal knight. He is a very old man, and has a large family, and by the action of the Minister he is thrown out in the street. I think that of all the dismissals made by the Government we must single this one out as most unjust and as one that would appeal to the consideration of any man. I must make an exception of the Minister of Inland Revenue (Mr. Nantel), because he is such a strong partisan that it would not appeal to him.

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LIB

Georges Henri Boivin

Liberal

Mr. BOIVIN:

Here is a man by the name of Prefontaine who is dismissed by letter dated the 14th of August. He is told that his services have been dispensed with on the ground of political partisanship, to take effect on the 1st of August. Did he get his salary for the fourteen days' service he rendered from between the 1st of August and the date when this letter was written?

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CON

Wilfrid Bruno Nantel (Minister of Inland Revenue)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. NANTEL:

Yes, so I am informed by the accountant of the department.

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LIB

Georges Henri Boivin

Liberal

Mr. BOIVIN:

This is a ve/y important matter. Here is an officer dismissed, who asks for an inquiry and is refused. We ask the minister why, and he says: We had affidavits. I think the committee has a right to know who signed those affidavits, what charges were laid, and before whom the affidavits were taken.

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LIB

Lucien Turcotte Pacaud

Liberal

Mr. PACAUD:

I would like it if the minister would give at the same time the letters he received applying for the position.

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CON

Wilfrid Bruno Nantel (Minister of Inland Revenue)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. NANTEL:

A return has been asked for; I believe it is in the hands of the Secretary of State. I have no objection to bringing down that return.

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LIB

Georges Henri Boivin

Liberal

Mr. BOIVIN:

I would like to look over the affidavits.

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CON

Wilfrid Bruno Nantel (Minister of Inland Revenue)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. NANTEL:

I see no objection, they will be brought down.

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LIB

David Arthur Lafortune

Liberal

Mr. LAFORTUNE:

I object to affidavits being read here, it is made a crime under the law.

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LIB

David Arthur Lafortune

Liberal

Mr. LAFORTUNE:

In that case I have nothing to complain about.

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CON

Wilfrid Bruno Nantel (Minister of Inland Revenue)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. NANTEL:

I shall now read that of Mr. Jules Lapointe:

Canada,

Province of Quebec.

I, the undersigned, Jules Lapointe, of the parish of Ste. Julie, do solemnly declare:

1. I am personally acquainted with Mr. Pr6-fontaine, of Lyster, in the county of Megantic, inspector of Weights and Measures.

2. I overheard the said Prefontaine discuss

with much warmth and earnestness political questions, taking the Liberal view of them, on or about September 16, 1911. .

And I do make this solemn declaration believing it to be conscientiously true and knowing that it has the same force and effect as if it was made under oath under the Evidence Act of Canada.

And I have signed: Jules Lapointe.

Received by me. .

d. McCullough,

Mayor of Inverness.

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LIB
CON

Wilfrid Bruno Nantel (Minister of Inland Revenue)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. NANTEL:

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LIB

David Arthur Lafortune

Liberal

Mr. LAFONTAINE:

Where was the mayor? Was he within the limits of his own town?

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CON

Wilfrid Bruno Nantel (Minister of Inland Revenue)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. NANTEL:

I cannot say.

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LIB

David Arthur Lafortune

Liberal

Mr. LAFORTUNE:

If tha mayor was not within the limits of his territory, he had no right to sign as mayor. The mayor of a parish is an ex-officio justice of the peace only within the limits of his town. I oh-

tained a ruling on that point from the Court of Appeal.

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CON

Wilfrid Bruno Nantel (Minister of Inland Revenue)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. NANTEL:

The last affidavit which I read is dated Thetford Mines.

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CON

Pierre Édouard Blondin (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BLONDIN:

I wish to point out to hon. gentlemen that this incipient discussion over affidavits is out of order. The question could be dealt with, of course, before a court of justice. I understand it is an optional question and it is difficult to say who is right and who is wrong. I think hon. gentlemen should revert to the question.

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March 5, 1914