Trudeau 'broke conflict of interest rules'

[img]" width="976" height="549">
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
Canadian PM Justin Trudeau violated federal conflict of interest rules in the handling of a corruption inquiry, the federal ethics tsar has found.The ethics commissioner says Mr Trudeau improperly tried to influence a former minister in the SNC-Lavalin affair. The prime minister has denied political meddling to shield engineering firm SNC-Lavalin from a criminal trial.The findings could be an issue for Mr Trudeau in advance of October's general election. Earlier this year, former justice minister and attorney general, Jody Wilson-Raybould, accused Mr Trudeau and his staff of spending months trying to convince her that taking SNC-Lavalin to trial would cost Canadians jobs, and their party votes.
Her accusation proved to be politically costly to Mr Trudeau - leading to the resignation of two high-profile cabinet ministers, his top personal aide and the head of the federal bureaucracy - and cast a shadow over his leadership.
What did the ethics commissioner report say[/img]
He said the authority of the Mr Trudeau and his office "was used to circumvent, undermine and ultimately attempt to discredit the decision" by Ms Wilson-Raybould and the federal prosecution service not to go ahead with a deferred prosecution agreement for SNC-Lavalin. His findings carry no legal implications beyond a possible minimal fine.
What is the SNC-Lavalin affair?
SNC-Lavalin is one of the world's largest engineering and construction companies and employs some 9,000 people in Canada.It is accused of bribing officials in Libya to win contracts under Muammar Gaddafi's regime and was charged in February 2015 with criminal offences that allegedly took place between 2001 and 2011.SNC-Lavalin has openly lobbied for an agreement that would allow it to avoid prosecution and instead face alternative penalties or measures, such as a fine.A conviction could result in a decade-long ban on bidding on Canadian federal contracts and and would allow authorities to cancel the company's current such contracts. The firm had argued it should be allowed to avoid a trial because it has changed following the federal charges and it has "worked tirelessly to achieve excellence in governance and integrity".The company hoped that it could come to an agreement with prosecutors that would be an alternative to trial. The attorney general must consent to the negotiation of the agreement.
A deepening crisis for Trudeau - what it means
Five quotes that sum up the Trudeau crisis
Ms Wilson-Raybould said members of Mr Trudeau's inner circle pressured her to cut a deal, and when she did not, she was removed from her position as justice minister.She and her colleague Jane Philpott resigned from Mr Trudeau's cabinet citing their concerns over the affair. They are both now running for re-election as independent candidates.
Jody Wilson-Raybould is running as an independent after being expelled from the Liberal caucus.
In his report, Mr Dion said that "because SNC-Lavalin overwhelmingly stood to benefit from Ms Wilson-Raybould's intervention, I have no doubt that the result of Mr Trudeau's influence would have furthered SNC-Lavalin's interests".
What has been the reaction?
"Justin Trudeau said he would be accountable and ethical," said federal Conservative leader Andrew Scheer on Twitter. "Instead he used the power of his office to reward his supporters and punish his critics." Mr Trudeau's political rivals also noted this is not Mr Trudeau's first ethics violation. In December 2017, the federal ethics commissioner office found that Mr Trudeau's luxury trips to the Aga Khan's island in the Bahamas violated four conflict of interest rules.Mr Trudeau, his family, and some senior members of the Liberal Party vacationed on the island owned by the philanthropist and spiritual leader in 2016.
See also:
Leave a comment
  • Latest
  • Read
  • Commented
Calendar Content
«    Февраль 2020    »