The head of a Canadian tech firm has expressed confusion after finding the federal government listed his company as having been paid $1.2 million contract to work on the ArriveCan app.
Craig McLellan, the CEO of ThinkOn Inc, said his company was never tapped for work on the controversial app and never received any of the said money, according to the Globe and Mail.
“It caught me by surprise. I think the amount of money they attributed to us was probably more than our total revenue generated within the federal government in the last fiscal year,” he told the paper.
ThinkOn was the sixth company on a list of outsourced contractors used to develop and maintain the app.
Conservatives have demanded that the federal government cough up more information about the secretive program which saw a majority of the work outsourced to confidential companies.
The House of Commons committee on government operations has launched an inquiry into how the federal government outsourced work on the app to the tune of $54 million.
According to McLellan his company doesn’t even work in the field of QR verification.
“We’re not even remotely in that space,” explained McLellan.
“I really can’t imagine how we could have been attributed to it.”
McLellan has confirmed that while his government does provide cloud services to the government it was not for the CBSA.
Another company, Ernst & Young, was also erroneously added to the list of contractors.
“EY was not involved with the ArriveCan app,” said EY spokesperson Victoria McQueen.
Recent figures show that what began as an $80,000 application to develop, quickly ballooned to a bill of over $54 million for taxpayers.
“As with any project, many elements had to come together to do this. The $54M we expect to have spent by March 31, 2023, was not just budgeted and spent on the creation and launch of the app itself, which costed $80K to launch in April 2020, but also on all the necessary work to operate, maintain and upgrade the app over the last two years,” Canadian Border Services Agency spokesperson Sandra Bourdreau told the Globe and Mail.