Mr. Speaker: Proceed.
J. van Dongen: "...I had hoped that there would have been renewal in my party and in government, but in the last 12 months I feel that has not happened. Indeed, every week constituents question government actions and issues that I am not able to defend.
"What I believe people expect from political leadership are core values that include integrity and a genuine commitment to public service. Integrity includes honesty, ethics and personal character. Integrity is non-negotiable. It is foundational for a strong organization, and most importantly, integrity includes full accountability.
"To this day, there are still serious unanswered questions regarding the writing off of $6 million in legal fees in the B.C. Rail case, contrary to government policy — questions I have been asking for a year and a half, and questions the Auditor General is seeking answers to through the courts.
"Most recently, the unexplainable cancellation of a $35 million naming rights agreement with TELUS is, in my view, another example of failed leadership. There have been other lapses in proper accountability, and I expect more to come.Liberal-friendly mainstream media have been calling BC Rail an old story, unworthy of examination. John van Dongen, former Liberal MLA, disagrees.
"When more and more decisions are being made for the wrong reasons, then you have an organization that is heading for failure.
"Today I rise because I can no longer carry on with my duties as a member of government. I have decided to resign as a member of the B.C. Liberal government caucus, and I'm cancelling my membership with the B.C. Liberal Party..."
MLA John van Dongen quits and says premier may have been involved in BC Rail deal, CBC News, March 26, 2012
"...But at a news conference later, with B.C. Conservative leader John Cummins at his side, van Dongen attacked Clark directly about the BC Rail deal and said he has hired a lawyer at his own expense to investigate her.
“There’s question about her involvement in the deal and I think those questions require more work. That’s one of the things that I need to do," Van Dongen said.
"But if you read carefully extended media interview transcripts during the leadership race, you will see inconsistencies that give rise to questions. And it will work with [a] Vancouver lawyer to pursue answers to those questions.”
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