Misty Lake Lodge owner buys ads demanding release of MANFF audit
Mike Bruneau accuses federal government of withholding KPMG audit results
The owner of Misty Lake Lodge in Gimli, Man., is taking to the airwaves to call on the federal government to release a key audit into the financial activities of the Manitoba Association of Native Firefighters (MANFF).
Mike Bruneau says the government is withholding the audit results, despite his numerous requests to make it public.
"I'm going to pay for ads to get the government to respond," he told CBC News on Tuesday. "I've just been ignored."
The radio advertisement calls on the public to contact both the provincial and federal governments to release the KPMG audit into MANFF that was ordered by the federal Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Department last year, when allegations of misspending, nepotism and drug abuse by MANFF staff surfaced.
Bruneau, who launched a lawsuit earlier this month naming the federal government and MANFF, said the agencies owe him almost $3 million in unpaid bills left over from accommodations and food that he said he provided to First Nations evacuees displaced by the 2011 flood.
"I want answers for these evacuees," Bruneau said in an interview. "I think there are people out there, the other taxpayers who are saying, 'Enough's enough.'"
- Gimli's Misty Lake Lodge suing MANFF, feds for $3M
- MANFF used Misty Lake Lodge like a 'party house,' says manager
- Manitoba lodge housing flood evacuees to shut down
Bruneau said he also wants accountability from the government on more than $85 million in flood aid that was funnelled to MANFF to care for the aboriginal evacuees.
The lodge closed down in the fall of 2013, after the last of the flood evacuees were moved out.
In an email, a spokesperson for Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada said a summary of the findings will be posted on the department's website "in due course" after it is reviewed for any privacy issues.
"The report is being reviewed, and will then follow the Department's standard posting process, which includes the review for any privacy issues, translation of the material and a comparative read for quality assurance. Once complete, a summary report will be posted to the AANDC website," the statement reads in part.
For Bruneau, that isn't good enough. He said the public has a right to know what happened to the money.
"The government has to give us some kind of answer," he said. "The whole audit needs to be released as is."
There have been numerous investigations into MANFF, including an internal investigation and a management review, in addition to the KPMG audit.
None of those reports has been made public.
The Canadian Red Cross took over care of the 2011 flood evacuees earlier this year, and MANFF continues to handle short-term evacuations of First Nations in the province affected by flooding.