Peanuts for the guardian angels…
The Journal de Montréal newspaper has just published hard-earned information about the astronomical prices charged by the MUHC’s PPP consortium for minor work, the kind of work that is done every day in a hospital the size of the MUHC.
5 846 $ – to install two electrical outlets for a freezer
33,691 $ – to replace 4 bathroom doors with electric doors
33,067 $ – to replace two doors with larger ones
2977 $ – to install a data outlet for a computer
And many more….
Already in 2015, the Journal de Montréal reported on abuses of public funds under the secrecy of P3 contracts:
409 $ – to move a hand soap dispenser in a bathroom
26,500 $ – just to move a couple dozen TVs;
20,442 $ – to move some “code blue” pictograms;
4,747 $ – to install obscuring film in two windows
For six years now, taxpayers have been having their pockets picked for even the smallest routine work. When will the government stop this scam?
Can the government put an end the contract?
YES! There was fraud and corruption in the awarding of the PPP contract to build and manage our MUHC for over 30 years. At least 4 key players in the decision to award the contract have been criminally convicted in the case of the $22.5 million in bribes that were paid to obtain the PPP contract: Arthur Porter, Yanai Elbaz of the MUHC and Riadh Ben Aïssa of SNC, and former SNC president Pierre Duhaime has pleaded guilty.
The PPP contract prohibits acts of corruption and fraud:
60. PROHIBITED ACTS
(a) “Prohibited Act” means any of the following:
(i) offering, giving or agreeing to give to CHUM or a Governmental Authority or to a person employed by or for CHUM or a Governmental Authority or to a representative, agent or consultant of CHUM or a Governmental Authority or to a member of the family of such person, a gift or consideration of any kind as an inducement or reward..:
(iii) violating or committing an offense under applicable Laws in connection with corrupt or fraudulent acts involving this Agreement or a Governmental Authority; or (…)
Illegal acts in obtaining a contract should, according to our Civil Code, lead to the pure and simple cancellation of the contract. Here are some passages from the Civil Code on “dol” (fraud), a word that means: if the government had known about the corruption it would not have signed the contract. The PPP contract obtained by fraud can be cancelled because the government’s consent was not free and informed at the time of signing the contract:
1399. Consent must be free and enlightened. it may be vitiated by error, fear or lesion.
1401. Error on the part of one party induced by fraud committed by the other party or with his knowledge vitiates consent whenever, but for that error, the party would not have contracted, or would have contracted on different terms.
Fraud may result from silence or concealment.
1407. A person whose consent is vitiated has the right to apply for annulment of the contract; in the case of error occasioned by fraud, of fear or of lesion, he may, in addition to annulment, also claim damages or, where he prefers that the contract be maintained, apply for a reduction of his obligation equivalent to the damages he would be justified in claiming.
If the government really wants to protect public funds, it must absolutely undertake the legal procedures to have the process of awarding the secret MUHC PPP contract declared vitiated by fraud and thus have the contract cancelled without penalty, because a contract declared vitiated by fraud can be cancelled “ab inicio”, which means:
“…the nullity of a juridical act, which, when pronounced, carries retroactivity and annuls the act from the very day of its formation. “(Private Law Dictionary)”
In other words, when there is fraud, the contract never existed and is without effect, so in the case of the MUHC, the contract could be cancelled without penalty or compensation for the consortium.
Millions and millions gone…
If in 2015 it cost $409 to move a hand soap dispenser in a patient room a few inches and in 2018 it costs $5,846 to install two electrical outlets, how many thousands if not millions have taxpayers overpaid in the last 6 years? How many millions will they be cheated out of with this PPP contract obtained by fraud and which continues for almost 30 years?
Meanwhile, the Legault government is making lousy offers to the “guardian angels”:
|Wage increase in 2021 and 2022 :; (1.75%)|
|Housekeepers||34 cents per hour|
|Administrative Agent Class 1||42 cents per hour|
|Sterilization Worker||37 cents per hour|
On top of that, there is a minimal lump sum that does not even count for the calculation of the pension.
At the MUHC, nearly 4,500 people work in these essential jobs that are not professional members, are underpaid and whose salaries have not kept up with inflation since 2004.
You certainly don’t lack money Mr. Legault since you let the PPP consortiums empty the public coffers without doing anything to put an end to these contracts as the Civil Code would allow you to do. So….
Pay your guardian angels Mr. Legault!