The Canadian government spent $181,600 last year to run an office for a corporate social responsibility counsellor for the Canadian mining industry even though it has failed to appoint one.
Allegations of human rights, environmental abuses
The position was created in 2009. The counsellor was supposed to inquire into allegations that some Canadian mining companies abused human rights or caused environmental damage in their operations abroad.
‘Government never was serious’
The information does not surprise opposition Liberal Member of Parliament John McKay, who requested the cost estimate. He says the government was never serious about the counsellor’s role in the first place. McKay calls the expense “a colossal waste of taxpayers’ money.”
Office still operating, says government
In reply, the minister responsible said “the government is moving to staff this important post as soon as possible” and that the office continues to operate with the support of officials from the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development.