May 1, 1947

PC

Howard Charles Green

Progressive Conservative

Mr. GREEN:

Will the minister explain this bill?

Topic:   CANADA EVIDENCE ACT
Subtopic:   PROOF OF TREATIES BV PRODUCTION OF "CANADA GAZETTE"
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LIB

James Lorimer Ilsley (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada)

Liberal

Mr. ILSLEY:

The purpose of the bill is to provide for the proof of treaties to which Canada is a party by the production of a copy of the Canada Gazette or a volume of the acts of the parliament of Canada purporting to contain a copy of the treaty or by production of a copy purporting to be printed by the king's printer for Canada. The only section in the Canada Evidence Act under which a Canadian treaty can be proven is section 24, which requires production of a copy certified under the hand of the proper officer or person in whose custody it is. Section 20 provides for proof of imperial treaties by production of

Canada Evidence Act

a copy of the Canada Gazette or a volume of the acts of the parliament of Canada purporting to contain a copy or by production of a copy thereof purporting to be printed by the king's printer for Canada. The amendment proposed will, for the purposes of the Canada Evidence Act, place Canadian treaties in the same position as imperial treaties.

Topic:   CANADA EVIDENCE ACT
Subtopic:   PROOF OF TREATIES BV PRODUCTION OF "CANADA GAZETTE"
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PC

Harold Aberdeen Watson Timmins

Progressive Conservative

Mr. TIMMINS:

What would be the practical application of this amendment? Would it have something to do with extradition, or something of that kind? Would it apply where a treaty for the extradition of prisoners would have to be read into the record?

Topic:   CANADA EVIDENCE ACT
Subtopic:   PROOF OF TREATIES BV PRODUCTION OF "CANADA GAZETTE"
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LIB

James Lorimer Ilsley (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada)

Liberal

Mr. ILSLEY:

I am afraid I cannot give an instance. This wTas requested by the Department of External Affairs. It seemed reasonable, and we went ahead with it.

Topic:   CANADA EVIDENCE ACT
Subtopic:   PROOF OF TREATIES BV PRODUCTION OF "CANADA GAZETTE"
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Motion agreed to, bill read the second time and the house went into committee thereon, Mr. Macdonald (Brantford City) in the chair. On section 1 - Proclamations, etc., of governor general.


PC

Harold Aberdeen Watson Timmins

Progressive Conservative

Mr. TIMMINS:

I notice the Secretary of State for External Affairs is in his place. Could he give us the practical application of the amendment?

Right Hon. L. S. ST. LAURENT (Secretary of State for External Affairs): Certain treaties are implemented by legislation, which place obligations upon citizens of Canada. There may be occasions when the existence of such a treaty would have to be proved. It might be in civil proceedings, or even in proceedings of a criminal nature.

Take, for instance, the treaty with respect to migratory birds. There may be a violation of the provisions of that treaty, sanctioned by penalties enacted by Canadian laws. And it might be necessary to establish before the courts the existence of the treaty. It constitutes a fact that may have to be established in the course of judicial proceedings. And, just as in the case of imperial treaties, it is felt that the method of proof should be the same as that established by the Canada Evidence Act for other documents emanating from public authorities.

Topic:   CANADA EVIDENCE ACT
Subtopic:   PROOF OF TREATIES BV PRODUCTION OF "CANADA GAZETTE"
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PC

Harold Aberdeen Watson Timmins

Progressive Conservative

Mr. TIMMINS:

Having regard to section 21 (a) of the proposed bill, we find that it says:

By the production of a copy of the Canada Gazette, or a volume of the acts of the parliament of Canada purporting to contain a copy of such treaty, proclamation, order, regulation, or appointment or a notice thereof;

(bl By the production of a copy of such treaty, proclamation, order, regulation or appointment, purporting to he printed by the king's printer for Canada.

It has always been my impression that there was a good deal of formality necessary in respect of the proving of matters of much less importance than the proving of a treaty. It seems to me that an order simply printed in ordinary form by the king's printer would hardly bear the formality necessary to protect us in respect of a serious matter such as this.

Mr. ST. LAURENT: The evidence of statutes, the evidence of orders in council, the evidence of any public act done by the proper public authority may be made by the production of a copy of the statute printed by the king's printer, or, if it is an order in council, by the production of a copy of the official Gazette where it appears, or in other cases it may be that the proof can be made by the war orders and regulations printed by the king's printer.

The fact that a document emanates from the office of the king's printer is usually regarded as sufficient to give it authenticity. In my own province this provision would not be required. In our civil courts under the civil code-I think it is article 1229-there is a rule providing for the manner in which these formal documents can be proved.

We now have treaties entered into between Canada and other nations; and all that is proposed in this bill is that the provision which existed heretofore for proving the kind of treaties by which Canada had been bound- that is to say, treaties made by the imperial government, and purporting to extend to all parts of the empire-be applied to the treaties which are made by our own Canadian authorities under the constitutional powers now enjoyed by Canada. It is not a new form of proof that is being introduced. It is merely the extension of a form of proof that has been of long usage to a new document which did not exist at the time the rule was formerly stated.

Topic:   CANADA EVIDENCE ACT
Subtopic:   PROOF OF TREATIES BV PRODUCTION OF "CANADA GAZETTE"
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Section agreed to. Bill reported, read the third time and passed.


CANADIAN NATIONAL RAILWAYS

APPOINTMENT OF GEORGE A. TOUCHE AND COMPANY AS AUDITORS


Hon. LIONEL CHEVRIER (Minister of Transport) moved that the house go into committee on Bill No. 26, respecting the appointment of auditors for national railways.


PC

Howard Charles Green

Progressive Conservative

Mr. GREEN:

Would the minister explain the bill?

Topic:   CANADIAN NATIONAL RAILWAYS
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF GEORGE A. TOUCHE AND COMPANY AS AUDITORS
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LIB

Lionel Chevrier (Minister of Transport)

Liberal

Mr. CHEVRIER:

This is the usual bill which comes before parliament each year and

Petitions

calls for the appointment of auditors for the Canadian National Railways. This year the appointment is sought for the firm of George A. Touche and Company of the cities of Toronto and Montreal.

Topic:   CANADIAN NATIONAL RAILWAYS
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF GEORGE A. TOUCHE AND COMPANY AS AUDITORS
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Motion agreed to, bill considered in committee, reported, read the third time and passed. On motion of Mr. Mackenzie the house adjourned at 10.55 p.m. Friday, May 2, 1947


May 1, 1947