Two weeks have now passed since John Dyble’s scathing report into the quick wins scandal. Shortly after the review was announced, the premier promised her government would get to the bottom of the scandal, which saw government resources used to further the interests of the Liberal Party.
Mr. Dyble was constrained by having no access to the Liberal Party or to the Liberal caucus, but among his findings and recommendations are many key questions that British Columbians still deserve answers to. Here are just the top 10 unanswered questions:
- Who authorized/directed John Yap’s most recent executive assistant Fiera Lo to continue to transfer information to a private email account on March 4 – after the investigation was under way? Was this information later transmitted to the B.C. Liberal Party to help with their re-election campaign?
- Given that Dyble made it very clear in his report that the terms of reference given to him by Premier Christy Clark did “not extend to making findings with respect to cabinet ministers or caucus employees,” why is the Liberal government refusing to allow an independent investigation that would assess all the players in the quick win ethnic outreach scheme?
- The Dec. 1, 2011 meeting, chaired by Kim Haakstad, seems to be the founding meeting of this strategy. Several attendees raised concerns about the appropriateness of the actions being contemplated. Which attendees? Why were those concerns ignored?
- Both John Yap and Premier Clark claim they never saw the planning documents. How does that square with emails showing Yap as part of the communication chain?
- Dyble references anonymous callers to the ministry clearly concerned about the possible transfer of their data to the Liberal party; has the government reached out to people whose data was collected to offer any assurance that their personal information is secure?
- The public was told by Premier Clark that the B.C. Liberal Party had “already written a cheque for $70,000” – an amount she explained by saying it was “what we estimate that cost might be.” Why are British Columbians being asked to simply take Clark’s word for how much taxpayer money was diverted to the B.C. Liberal Party in the quick win scandal?
- Premier Clark also told the media that “If it is more, we will write another cheque” – have they? How is the public even to know when this process is entirely secret and unaccountable?
- Will Premier Clark commit to providing the public with an update to any investigation being done by the Comptroller General, as required by Recommendation #6? When can that update be expected?
- John Dyble also could not interview the Liberal Party-connected “community liaison” contractors hired through the RFQ process that the report shows was controlled and thus tainted by multiculturalism minister John Yap and his assistants Mike Lee and Brian Bonney. Have the contractors now been interviewed? And if so, what new information was learned?
- Premier Clark told the media that she accepted all of the recommendations in the report and would “take action immediately.” Dyble’s first recommendation was for the Chief of Staff to “take appropriate disciplinary and corrective action” for political staff. Why was there no discipline for Fiera Lo, Yap’s former executive assistant Dave Ritchie (hired by the premier’s office after the program was initiated), Clark’s senior outreach co-ordinator Barinder Bhullar or Clark's outreach director Pamela Martin, who are all implicated in the scandal?