Thursday, March 14, 2013

$10 million & 9 million of Canadian taxpayer dollars

The Canadian government wastes exorbitant amounts of taxpayers' money on security and corruption. In an example that has recently come to light, Canadians don't even know exactly how much was spent! Meanwhile, those on social assistance or employment insurance (which used to be called 'unemployment insurance') are accountable for every last red dollar--including getting 'home visits' if the feds think you're lying.

For the dam --or should I say, damn-- project, we only know that about 10 million dollars was paid to a private security firm--and we know that this company is well known for its links to crime and corruption. Interesting, but not surprisingly, one of our own Canadian crime-and-corruption firms, SNC-Lavalin, is again caught up in scandal and, most likely, illegal actions. SNC-Lavalin, a powerful Canadian engineering firm/military contractor, is part of yet another outrageous mis-use of funds, and no doubt corruption and paying off powerful elites plays a role in the Dahla dam case in Afghanistan, as they did in Lavalin's corrupt dealings with repressive power lords in Libya:
Canada spent about $10 million on security in Afghanistan at its $50-million Dahla dam project, where private security contractors were linked to allegations of corruption and involved in an armed standoff with Canadian security officials.
One of Canada’s signature projects in Afghanistan, the Dahla dam was guarded in part by Watan Risk Management, a controversial Afghan security firm with alleged ties to crime and corruption. How much they were paid remains secret.

The Canadian International Development Agency contracted the project to SNC-Lavalin, which was responsible for security.
There's no other word but outrageous for this disgusting abuse of taxpayers' money. Where are the regulations and overseers to prevent this kind of crime? Seems our neoliberal government supports "security" and paying off foreign firms with terrible records of criminality. Maybe $10m is a drop in the bucket, as it seems $9 million was also spent covering up crime: this time on greenwashing environmental destruction:
 The Canadian government's ad campaign hid the gutting of environmental laws.

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