Canada's Chief Electoral Officer Marc Mayrand waits to testify before the Commons procedure and House affairs committee in Ottawa March 29, 2012.
Credits: REUTERS/Chris Wattie
"These are very serious matters that strike at the integrity of our democratic process," Marc Mayrand told the procedure and House affairs committee Thursday. "If they are not addressed and responded to they risk undermining the essential ingredient in a democracy.
"During or immediately after the election, we received approximately 70 complaints alleging various forms of improper telephone communication including messages impersonating Elections Canada employees and sending electors to the wrong poll location."
Mayrand said 6,700 calls were placed from the infamous Quebec cellphone number registered under the false name "Pierre Poutine."
The calls were made to the Guelph, Ont., region and prompted 70 complaints.
Nationally there have been 800 specific complaints made to Elections Canada from 200 ridings.
Conservative committee members noted that it works out to four complaints per reported riding.
"I find it troubling to hear sweeping and vague allegations of irregularities being made public many months after the election not supported by specific facts; in some cases the complaints are made to the media without information being forwarded to Elections Canada," Mayrand said.
Ultimately, he said he stands behind the certified results of the last federal election in which the Conservatives won a majority government. Mayrand will appear before the committee again before the summer break and will also provide two reports to Parliament within the next year.