Conservatives demand answers from ArriveCan firm that received $258 million from Trudeau government

"We're going to summon them again."


Conservative MPs investigating the unraveling ArriveCan ap scandal want to subpoena the two owners of GC Strategies, a firm that benefited from the Covid-19 program and has received $258 million in Trudeau government contracts since 2015.

The two-man company has no IT expertise but acts as middle-man hiring third-party tech support. 

At a news conference in Ottawa Tuesday former Conservative leader and current Saskatchewan MP Andrew Scheer said while it is “very rare” ‘to subpoena witnesses to Parliamentary committees, “it’s unfortunate it's come to this point. But it's essential that we use this tool if these individuals continue to ignore us, so we're going to summon them again. And this time, though, there will be the understanding that if they ignore this summons, that there will be consequences,” Scheer told reporters.

“Yes, it's rare,” Scheer continued, “but we're talking about at least $60 million of taxpayers money and that the government used the pandemic as an excuse to ignore the rules.”

Both the House of Commons Standing Committee on Public Accounts and Government Operations are examining how the ArriveCan app went from an estimated cost of $80,000 to at least $60 million. Federal Auditor General Karen Hogan eviscerated the Trudeau government’s handling of the project, noting that “The Canada Border Services Agency’s documentation, financial records, and controls were so poor that we were unable to determine the precise cost of the ArriveCAN application. Using the information that was available, we estimated the cost at approximately $59.5 million.”

The app was supposed to enable travelers entering or reentering Canada with a quicker method of confirming their mandatory vaccination status but proved to be a financial disaster. 

Scheer noted Tuesday that the app did not even work effectively as “at least 10,000 people were wrongly given quarantine orders because of a glitch in the app. I mean, we're talking about 10,000 people who had to quarantine at their own expense, many of whom would have missed shifts at work or missed important life events. And that's unacceptable”

Scheer said the fact that GS Securities partners Kristian Firth and Darren Anthony “have already ignored previous requests is not just unfortunate, but it's a sign of grave disrespect to Canadian taxpayers. And now it's up to the liberals and NDP to vote with us to ensure that Canadians find the truth.”

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