Dear Minister Valcourt,
BC Metis Federation continues to write to address public concerns related to the Métis issues and concerns on behalf of our board and partner community from across the Province which represents over 7300 Métis people. Therefore we write today to address the ongoing questions and concerns related to Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada (AANDC) compliance audit of the Manitoba Métis Federation (MMF).
Since April 7th the BC Métis Federation has been calling for an immediate stop of public funding to the Métis National Council (MNC) in light of serious allocations stemming from the third party compliance audits completed in October of 2012 by Hallux Consulting Inc. We have also requested clarification from AANDC regarding compliance audits of their governing members including the Métis Nation British Columbia (MNBC), MMF, etc. Despite a series of BC Métis Federation letters AANDC has yet to respond.
It is becoming increasingly clear why AANDC does not want to answer the questions of public concern raised by the BC Métis Federation. We want to know what actions have been taken to address the ongoing and clear mismanagement of AANDC program funds at the MNC or their governing members.
Attached is the Compliance Audit of the Manitoba Métis Federation. This compliance audit continues to demonstrate how the Métis people of Canada are being misrepresented with almost no public accountability of these organizations to their constituents, which many know the strong tie of MMF to MNC. The MMF audit, while dated, raises serious questions about the MMF’s financial controls and the significant amount of ineligible expenses in the two year period compliance audit review. The AANDC compliance auditors review only a portion of the MMF’s project funding in the reporting period of 2008-2010 totalling approximately $2.2 million in various project governance funding. The compliance auditors identified approximately $500,000 in ineligible expenses plus recommended to recoup another $4,032 is recoverable payables. A large portion of the ineligible expenses were charged by MMF in their Building Organizational Capacity 2009-2010, Annex 5 which totalled $91,626.00. Upon further review the reader can ascertain the level of financial mismanagement throughout each of the programs. Due to the severity of the situation the auditors actually recommend AANDC continue to arrange for an independent audit of the MMF reporting for an extended period of time.
These issues continue to reveal the dysfunction of the MNC and their governing members which directly and negatively affects the Métis people. Our letters are fact based with information from your own third party auditors and officials. The policy of the current Federal Government has two laws; one for non Métis people and one for Métis organizations in the “political” circle. Only a short time ago the current Federal Government’s party removed party Senators who misspent public funds. The allegations in terms of financial impacts are far less than what the MNC and MMF has proven through AANDC’s compliance audits against their own Métis people. In fact today suspended Senators confront criminal prosecution for less than $100,000.00 of questionable expenses. Yet, for example, MNC had a reported $1.35 million in ineligible expenses, far greater and against a community with far less capacity thereby increasing the impacts to our community. Therefore why have there been no consequences or actions for the breach of public trust by the Métis organizations or leaders on behalf of all Métis people in Canada? It appears business as usual for MNC and their governing members, such as MMF, with new agreements and partnerships with AANDC and various Federal Government departments. Worse yet, BC Métis Federation is aware of other MNC governing members, such as MNBC, who also appear to have AANDC compliance audit issues which further proves our position. We will disclose this information in due course.
Métis people across the country deserve justice and as Minister there is a legal and fiduciary duty to protect our collective interests and Constitutionally protected rights. This is why the BC Métis Federation and other Métis people from across Canada need a new approach going forward. There is no transparency about the results of the AANDC compliance audits and Métis people must know the actual truth. We cannot move forward as Métis people until we tackle these issues head on, not letting some of these Métis politicians and their organizations hide their mismanagement by grandiose political statements. Métis leaders were to support their communities and those in need. As a Métis community we need the Federal Government and your office to return to these values.
We continue to request a meeting at your earliest convenience and we will travel to Ottawa soon where we intend to meet.
BC Métis Federation
Suite 300-3665 Kingsway
August 2011 Manitoba Metis Federation Compliance Audit
[ilink url=”[ilink url=”http://bcmetis.com/wp-content/uploads/BCMF-letter-to-AANDC-Minister-Valcourt-May-5th-2014-MMF-Compliance-Audit.pdf” style=”download”]Download this Press Release in PDF[/ilink]