Tainted Blood: From Arkansas to Canada

greenspun.com : LUSENET : TB2K spinoff uncensored : One Thread


OTTAWA (CP) -- Finance Minister Paul Martin withheld information about his role in overseeing a company that distributed tainted-blood products, Opposition critics charged Wednesday.

But Martin denied interference with the federal ethics commissioner's investigation into conflict-of-interest allegations against him.

The allegations centre on Martin's stint as a director of Canada Development Corp. (CDC) in the 1980s when it controlled Connaught Laboratories, which used Arkansas prison blood to make blood products.

It has been charged that Martin should not have participated in cabinet discussions on compensation for tainted blood victims 10 years later, due to his former involvement with CDC.

Both CDC and Connaught are defunct and Martin has said he can't remember any discussion of tainted blood when he served on the CDC board.

His statements have led to great interest in the minutes of the CDC board of directors' meetings when Martin was a director.

Documents obtained this week under the Access to Information Act indicate the Finance Department received copies of the CDC minutes in early June yet continued to deny having them.


Martin participated in cabinet decisions to prevent the Krever commission from making findings of blame, and to restrict compensation for hepatitis C victims to those infected from 1986 to 1990.

"This minister had a huge interest in boosting profits at Connaught Laboratories during the years that they imported tainted blood from U.S. prison," said Opposition Leader Deborah Grey.


-- viewer (justp@ssing.by), April 05, 2000

Moderation questions? read the FAQ