The trial of former SNC Lavalin leader Sami Bebawi has begun on the alleged corruption that has been carried out in Libya by SNC. However, we are learning a lot of interesting things in this trial. Things that bring us back to the scandal of our MUHC built as a PPP, a contract obtained through the fraud and corruption of Arthur Porter and company.
Among other things, we learn that SNC “never paid “out of their own pocket” when it wanted to pay money to people who could intervene on its behalf to obtain a contract; instead, it made its customers pay by inflating its prices accordingly“.
We kind of suspected so… the $22.5 million paid to corrupt and obtain the MUHC PPP contract would have been passed on to the taxpayers we are. But the abuses do not end when the contract is obtained. The PPP contract provides that for the next 30 years, it’s the consortium that does the maintenance and skilled trades work in our hospital and this contract is secret.
If normal maintenance is covered by the contract, it is still necessary to define the meaning of the word. What is “normal maintenance” and what is not? If the work is not “normal” in the sense of the consortium it becomes a billable “extra“.
Despite the secrecy of the contract, we have some examples of invoices sent to taxpayers. The little that has been made public gives us the creeps. For example, when it is necessary to:
– Correct at a cost of $5 million, the deficient ventilation system in the operating room, the consortium refuses to pay and declares “that this is a request for an amendment to the initial agreement“, therefore an “extra“.
– “Quebecers paid more than $8,000 to have the electrical outlets of two freezers installed”
– “The cost of workers invoiced by consortia to taxpayers has also been kept secret. We discovered that at the MUHC, it reaches $125 an hour.”
To this must be added the mutual lawsuits between the consortium and the MUHC, which in 2017 amounted to more than $330 million…
An undisclosable contract means that the public must simply pay and pay and pay until 2049.
The Liberal government is responsible for this mess and the CAQ government is doing nothing to put an end to it.
Yet the government has everything it needs to terminate the contract and even terminate it without compensation.
Fraud at the MUHC has been proven. People have been convicted, including Riadh Ben Aïssa, Arthur Porter’s former right-hand man.
According to the Civil Code, a contract obtained by fraud may be declared ” absolutely null” by the Court. It is enough for those who were defrauded, the government and the hospital, to go to the Superior Court and have them found that they were deceived. If they had known that Arthur Porter and company had orchestrated the fraud, they would never have signed such a contract.
Yet the government does nothing and we taxpayers pay… again and again for “extras” of all kinds. If the installation of 2 freezer sockets is not “normal” maintenance and is not covered by the rent of almost $9 million per month, one can imagine the list of “extras” that is charged to taxpayers each month.
The few scandalous examples of abuse that have been made public come from documents given to the media by whistleblowers.
We need more whistleblowers, we need the truth to come out about the true nature of the PPP contract. It is about our tax money disappearing.
The argument that trade secrecy is necessary to protect competitiveness is a monumental farce. The PPP contract gives an absolute monopoly to the consortium on the works until 2047. There is no competition it is already determined in the contract that the consortium has the monopoly.
It is because the PPP has a monopoly that it can afford to charge “$8,000 to install the electrical outlets of two freezers“. We learned that from a whistleblower. Since that revelation, how many invoices have there been like that?
We, the MUHC union, do not intend to abandon denouncing these PPP contracts because the same government that refuses to take the necessary steps to terminate those contracts is the one that tells us that there is no money for public sector employees who, for 20 years, have lost purchasing power year after year.
We invite anyone who may disclose abuse of public funds to contact UPAC directly or contact us.MUHCEU Executive Committee