Letter: Money laundering inquiry exposes Richmond rot

Dear Editor,

Re: “Money-laundering inquiry hears of prostitution, birth tourism,” News, Nov. 14.

The Cullen Commission on money laundering in B.C. has held several public meetings, including one in Richmond.

Although some presentations were, let’s just say, out there, way out there, many presenters made valid points.

One presenter in Richmond had it absolutely right when they said: “The four red flags for money laundering — Richmond screams them all: cars, jets, casinos, mansions. We are the gateway.”

There could have been at least a half dozen or more red flags added to the list. Richmond is ground zero for many of the social issues plaguing the Lower Mainland in particular, and B.C. and Canada in general.

During this time there has been one constant: Mayor Malcolm Brodie, aided by a revolving door of development-at-any-cost councillors.

This is the mayor who has no problem consorting with the Chinese consulate in Vancouver while Canadians are illegally held in prisons under horrific conditions and who only considers China’s long list of human rights abuses “questionable.”

Perhaps the mayor could inform us how his policy of “dialogue” has advanced the cause of these people?

Brodie and council had tools at their disposal to proactively address some of the issues (zoning, bylaws, enforcement…) but typically had to be dragged kicking and screaming into making even the most minor of changes.

For issues outside of Richmond’s authority, municipal politicians could have advocated to higher levels of government, but refused to do so.

These short-sighted politicians are the reason there is so much rot in Canada, and I have no confidence these same politicians have what it takes to make the changes, no matter how many commissions.

As long as we keep electing the same politicians, we can expect the same results.

Al Williams

RICHMOND

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