Don’t let Infrastructure Ontario investigate its own cover-up
NDP MPP Taras Natyshak today asked Premier Wynne to take the investigation of a fraud and cover-up involving a former Infrastructure Ontario executive away from Infrastructure Ontario and turn it over to an independent third party, and commit to making the findings public.
“In the past two weeks, we have learned that you can be a top procurement executive at Infrastructure Ontario, you can admit to procurement fraud, and nothing will happen. Senior executives at Infrastructure Ontario, and possibly the board, can know about your fraud and you can still stay in business,” Natyshak said. “The Premier’s Chief of Staff can know about your fraud, and you can still be put in charge of procuring a $300 million patient centre.”
“Will the government commit to a truly independent investigation of this fraud and cover-up, and make the findings available to the public?”
Natyshak said there is evidence of a culture at Infrastructure Ontario that tolerates and covers up fraud, and it shouldn’t be trusted to investigate itself.
“An outsourced investigation is not the same thing as an independent investigation. We have evidence of a culture within Infrastructure Ontario that tolerates and covers up procurement fraud. But the government has trusted IO to investigate its own cover-up. Last December, the Auditor-General found that conflict-of-interest guidelines at Infrastructure Ontario are routinely ignored. The Premier has stacked the IO board with former executives of companies that do business with IO,” Natyshak said.
“Will the government take this investigation away from Infrastructure Ontario, and commit to a truly independent and public investigation of this fraud and cover-up, as well as the culture within Infrastructure Ontario that allowed it to happen?” Natyshak said.