Immigration Minister John McCallum speaks in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill on Sept. 30, 2016. (Photo: Sean Kilpatrick/CP)Independent Sen. Ratna Omidvar, who is sponsoring another citizenship-related bill in the upper house, is planning an amendment that would allow those deemed to have misrepresented themselves to appeal a decision to revoke their citizenship. McCallum, who was grilled by senators Tuesday, says he'd welcome such an amendment. Revocation without a hearing was part of a citizenship bill passed by the previous Conservative government. The provision was denounced by the Liberals when they were in opposition but lawyers say they've been aggressively enforcing it since forming government.
Law could potentially ensnare Monsef
He asked if McCallum would order his department to immediately cease applying the law until those facing revocation of their citizenship are entitled to a hearing and an appeal process. "The short answer to that question is no," McCallum initially responded. He agreed that everyone should have a "proper right to appeal" and professed hope that the Senate would amend Bill C-6 to provide for that. "I would certainly welcome such an amendment," he said.
"You, minister, have acknowledged that this process needs to be fixed, and yet your department officials continue to issue revocation notices to Canadians on these grounds."
— Sen. Art Eggleton
'There's a disconnect there'
Liberals opted not to deal with provisionThe Liberal government chose not to deal with the provision in Bill C-6, which repeals other aspects of the Conservatives' citizenship regime, including a provision empowering the government to revoke the citizenship of dual nationals who are convicted of high treason or terrorism. The NDP attempted to amend the bill in the House of Commons to repeal the power to revoke citizenship without a hearing but that was ruled outside the scope of the bill. Omidvar, who is sponsoring C-6 in the upper chamber, has said Senate procedural rules are different and she's hopeful the upper house will be able to do what the Commons could not.
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