Councillor renews calls for public inquiry into Winnipeg police HQ
'We have to ensure that [this] never happens again,' Transcona Coun. Russ Wyatt says
A Winnipeg councillor is renewing calls for a public inquiry into construction contracts with the city following the Monday release of documents alleging invoices from the police headquarters project were manipulated.
"I think we have to find out what happened and we have to ensure that it never happens again, and we have to make changes appropriately based on what we find out," Wyatt said.
Fraud and forgery allegations are at the centre of the RCMP investigation into the construction of the Winnipeg police headquarters, according to court documents unsealed Monday and obtained by CBC News.
The documents that authorized the search of Caspian Construction's headquarters on McGillivray Boulevard in December 2014 were unsealed after CBC News filed a motion last year to make them public.
- Fraud, fake documents alleged in Winnipeg police HQ investigation, say court documents
- Police HQ contractor sent Sam Katz thousands of dollars in personal cheques: court documents
- Transit garage invoices billed to Winnipeg police HQ: court documents
Caspian is the company hired by the city to build the new police headquarters on Graham Avenue.
Wyatt maintains a public, transparent inquiry would help clear the air.
"An independent judicial public inquiry, headed by a retired judge or somebody to that effect, would have those types of powers," he said. "I think it's crucial at this time…. Enough is enough."
Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman's office released a statement Monday evening saying the city would not comment on the issue while it is before the courts.
"The allegations contained within the warrant have not been proven in court, and this matter continues to be subject to an active police investigation," a spokesperson with the city said.
"The Mayor is respecting the work of police and is awaiting the results of the investigation. As well, the City of Winnipeg has been and will continue to co-operate fully with the ongoing investigation."
The offices of Premier Greg Selinger and Progressive Conservative Leader Brian Pallister both echoed the city's response, saying they await findings from the court proceedings and won't comment on the matter while the investigation is ongoing.
With files from the CBC's Sean Kavanagh and Joanne Levasseur