The Liberal government has yet to retrieve the nearly $133,000 paid to “anti-racist” consultant Laith Marouf and nobody at the Ministry of Canadian Heritage has been disciplined or fired for approving the contract despite Marouf’s history of antisemitism.
Conservative deputy leader Melissa Lantsman grilled Minister of Canadian Heritage Pablo Rodriguez and others on Monday during a House of Commons heritage committee meeting – inquiring what had been done since the scandal surfaced last year.
“I want to go back ot the case of Laith Marouf. That’s the consultant who got at least $133,000 from the Ministry that took over a month to do anything about or frankly acknowledge from your office. So I want to know if that $133,000 has been paid back?” asked Lantsman.
Instead of answering the question, Rodriguez turned to his deputy minister.
In response, Deputy Minister of Canadian Heritage Isabelle Mondou revealed that the government was still “in recovery” and was relying on a debt collection agency and the CRA to retrieve the funding from Marouf.
“So we are in recovery and we are using two avenues: the first one is a recovery agency and the other one is the CRA,” said Mondou.
“Still, it hasn’t been paid back. Has anybody faced consequences for hiring Laith? Has anybody been fired? In a regular job or a regular place if you do something like that there are consequences. Has anybody in the Ministry at all faced consequences for the vile anti-semitism?” asked Lantsman.
According to Mondou, Marouf “was not hired by the department” and his organization only received funding from the Ministry.
“A lot of measures have been put in place to try to avoid that kind of event in the future including by better screening, better monitoring and also training. People have also been provided training,” claimed Mondou.
Last year, a series of social media posts by Marouf prompted an investigation by the federal government and a subsequent cancellation of a contract with Marouf’s organization, the Community Media Advocacy Centre.
Despite being hired on to consult in an “anti-racism” capacity, Marouf made several disparaging and dehumanizing statements towards the Jewish community.
“Life is too short for shoes with laces, or for entertaining Jewish White Supremacists with anything but a bullet to the head,” tweeted Marouf.
Marouf also referred to “loud mouthed bags of human feces” he called “Jewish White Supremacists.”
“You know all those loud mouthed bags of human feces, aka the Jewish White Supremacists; when we liberate Palestine and they have to go back to where they came from, they will return to being low voiced bitches of thier Christian/Secular White Supremacist Masters,” tweeted Marouf.