June 11, 2002 Via Fax
To: Members of the Cabinet Special Committee of Council
Re: Wasyl Odynsky
We have received last minute word that your Committee will be considering the recommendation of Minister Coderre to strip Mr. Wasyl Odynsky of his Canadian citizenship at tomorrow afternoon's meeting.
Of course, as you have been made well aware by organizations such as ours, the Ukrainian Canadian Civil Liberties Association, the Ukrainian Canadian Congress and others, the basis of the Odynsky matter coming before you is the denaturalization and deportation process which is inherently unfair, biased and politically motivated. Both the Canadian Civil Liberties Association and the Canadian Bar Association have expressed opposition to various aspects of denaturalization and deportation, none the least of which is the fact that politicians - in this case yourselves - are allowed to make the final decision on this man's citizenship.
The only proper course of action is for your committee to decide to:
a) retain Mr. Odynsky's citizenship; and
b) stop all pretence of "bringing anyone accused to justice" by scrapping the denaturalization and deportation process forthwith.
If your committee insists on prolonging this farcical procedure, then at the very least a number of Committee members should recuse themselves from hearing the matter. In that vein, we demand that the following Committee members remove themselves from that part of the meeting dealing with the Odynsky agenda item: Ministers M. Cauchon, L. Robillard and D. Coderre.
Because of their direct involvement in either or all of the investigative, indictment issuance, prosecutorial, and recommendation stages of denaturalization and deportation cases, their presence on this Committee to sit in final judgment of Mr. Odnysky would make a complete mockery of justice, due process and the rule of law in Canada.
Eugene Harasymiw, LL.B.
Chair, Civil Liberties Standing Committee