Former Governor General Adrienne Clarkson has been squeezing all she can out of us through the little-known lifetime expense program for former governors general.
Since she left her post in 2005, she has billed taxpayers more than $1.1 million in office expenses – and she has collected another $1.6 million as part of her government pension. This is outrageous.
But that wasn’t enough for Clarkson. Those figures do not include the $3 million start-up grant that was paid to allow her to set up her charity, the Institute for Canadian Citizenship – let alone the additional $7 million (paid out over ten years to match donations from the private sector) for the same cause. And, to top it all off, Clarkson has even managed to max out the expense program’s annual spending limit of $206,000 per year!
Clarkson has lived on the taxpayer’s dime for almost her entire professional life. She started off as a producer and broadcast journalist for the CBC before she began accepting cushy diplomatic postings overseas. Spending all of that time working for the state broadcaster and then in government – boy, that could certainly foster a sense of entitlement and disrespect for exactly who pays your salary!
Even the Queen is more accountable than this constitutional princess – and I’m not even joking. The Royal Household is subject to the same scrutiny as other public institutions through the National Audit Office, which is similar to the Auditor General in Canada. The public can view those yearly expense and audit reports online. This means that the Queen of Canada, Queen Elizabeth II, is more accountable than Clarkson herself – imagine that!
So, I want to bring some trust back to the institution – and sunlight is the best disinfectant.
I want to audit Adrienne Clarkson.
If you agree with me, please sign the petition below. We’re going to deliver it to the Auditor General, Michael Ferguson. It’s his job to conduct independent audits and studies that provide objective information, advice, and assurance to Parliament, territorial legislatures, boards of crown corporations, government, and Canadians. Everyone needs to see exactly how Clarkson has been spending our tax dollars. She must be held to account.
Sign the petition!
We, the undersigned, demand that the Auditor General, Michael Ferguson, audit former Governor General Adrienne Clarkson.