March 27, 1915 (12th Parliament, 5th Session)

LIB

Alexander William Chisholm

Liberal

Mr. CHISHOLM:

Yes. I have nothing at all to say against him. Shortly afterwards trouble arose between Mr. Maillet and one of the crew, Mr. Cormier. Mr. Cormier was dismissed by one of the officers of the department, I think Commander Thompson. An investigation was asked for, and Mr. Nickerson, who is also an officer of the department, was sent down to investigate thi matter. He made certain recommendations. At the investigation, however, counter charges were made hy Cormier against Maillet, who was captain. Mr. Nickerson investigated the charges and the counter charges. His report I find in t1 return I have here. He exonerates both parties from any very serious guilt. He says:

In my opinion, the complaint against Cormier as contained in the coxswain's letter to you is by no means sustained in all its gravity, while the counter charge is a trifling matter indeed, a sort of trumpery accusation quite easily accounted for.
That is the opinion of Mr. Nickerson with regard to Mr. Maillet. I moved for this return 'some time ago, and looking over it from cover to cover, I find that there is nothing against Mr. Maillet. I propose, however, following the various pages here. The next thing I^find is that Mr. Cormier was reinstated, and that my opponent, Mr. Gallant a thorough gentleman, I must say, but of course a very strong Tory, recommended the dismissal of Mr. Maillet forthwith. The minister in reply to him stated that, in his judgment, the was no justification for the dismissal of Mr. Mail-let. The hon. minister said what was Tight, that one of his officers, who went down there and investigated the case, stated that there was nothing to justify his dismissal such a short time after his appointment. In that the minister was thoroughly correct. He had the interest of the station at' heart then; and had he continued to occupy that position with respect to this case, it would have been better for the station and for all concerned. Another officer, however, was sent down, namely, Admiral Kingsmill. He also made a report. I am going to put his report upon Hansard. He addressed the report to the department:
With reference to your memorandum of 31st August, I beg to report that I visited this station on the 15th of October and found that Mr. Gallant, who makes the charges against the coxswain was not there, but I interviewed several people and found that there is a feeling that the coxswain is not loyal to the Government who gave him his appointment.
I would hardly think that a man in the position that Admiral Kingsmill occupies would be sent down there to determine the politics of this man. He would be' sent down for technical purposes, to find out whether the station was satisfactory, and so forth. The report continues:
I would submit that there is no reason for retaining him in the appointment; he is not able to manage his boat's crew, and the station is most untidy and ill-kept. When the station is closed down at the close of navigation, I would suggest that some one be nominated to take charge, make an inventory and lock the boathouse up until the re-opening of navigation, when the new coxswain and crew should be appointed. None of the crew made any complaint to me against the coxswain, and he himself spoke such indifferent English that I could

not gather from him any reason for the trouble which had taken place.
Mr. Maillet is a Frenchman and speaks French very well. I do not know whether Admiral Kingsmill .speaks French or not.

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