Ex-MP Rahim Jaffer broke lobbying rules
Former Conservative MP Rahim Jaffer and his business partner Patrick Glémaud broke the Lobbyists' Code of Conduct, Lobbying Commissioner Karen Shepherd said Monday.
The report looked at 10 allegations over Jaffer and Glémaud's efforts to get federal government funding in 2009 on behalf of their company, Green Power Generation, a news release from Shepherd's office says. She found they breached the code in five of the allegations.
"Green Power Generation was a commercial enterprise established with the intention of generating revenue. Although Mr. Glémaud and Mr. Jaffer were not successful in securing more than $178 million in government funding that they were seeking, their activities required registration," she said.
"This report shows that registration is required even if the desired outcome is not achieved."
Breaches of the Code carry no fines or jail terms.
'Lays the foundation' for new RCMP investigation
Shepherd says Glémaud was required to register and report in-house lobbying performed by the principals of GPG but didn't, putting him in breach. He also failed to register lobbying done on behalf of another compnay and didn't tell the company, RLP Energy Inc., that he had to register.
Jaffer, who was an MP from 1997 to 2008, should have registered as an in-house lobbyist but didn't, and should have told Glémaud, that he was obliged to register.
NDP MP Pat Martin says it worries him that there's little consequence to breaching the code of conduct.
"The verdict is guilty, guilty and guilty," Martin said. "We are very concerned about the pattern that this indicates."
He's also concerned that some senior bureaucrats took meetings with Jaffer.
"I think that this lays the foundation for the RCMP to investigate further," Martin said.
The RCMP closed their investigation last summer into the allegations against Jaffer and his wife, Helena Guergis, who was an MP from 2004 until she was defeated in May, 2011. Guergis' lawyer said the RCMP found no evidence of wrongdoing.
Shepherd says she sent the file to the RCMP because she had reasonable grounds to believe Jaffer and Glémaud broke the rules, and the RCMP decided not to proceed.
"The file was returned to me and I continued because I had sufficient grounds with the Lobbyist Code of Conduct investigation and as you can see I found that they had breached the Lobbyist Code of Conduct, which is why I am tabling this report today," she said.
Shepherd says the report to Parliament is significant as a consequence of breaking the rules. "I think the reputation of an individual is quite important, you know, especially for a lobbyist in terms of their ability to maintain or track clients, perhaps even gain employment."