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February 8th, 2019

Singh calls on Trudeau to Launch Ethics Investigation into ‘Preferential Treatment’ of SNC-Lavalin

BURNABY – On Friday, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh called on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to invite the Federal Ethics Commissioner to investigate the government’s actions regarding SNC-Lavalin which may have resulted in the removal of Jody Wilson-Raybould from her position as Attorney General of Canada.

“Canadians deserve a government that is on their side, not on the side of a massive multinational corporation with deep ties to the Liberal Party,” said Singh. “If the Prime Minister truly believes there is no wrongdoing here, he should invite the Ethics Commissioner to investigate his office’s dealings with SNC-Lavalin and whether or not that was a factor in the removal of Ms. Wilson-Raybould from her position as Attorney General.”

The Conflict of Interest Act prohibits a member of the government from giving “preferential treatment to any person or organization based on the identity of the person or organization.” In 2016, the Liberal Party of Canada was forced to return over $100,000 in illegal donations they received from SNC-Lavalin’s political slush fund. The Ethics Commissioner should also investigate if Justin Trudeau was one of the recipients of the illegal donations. Singh also pointed to sections in the Act which govern ‘Influence’ and ‘Insider Information’ as potential sources of other violations.

On the day she was removed from the office of Attorney General by Mr. Trudeau, Wilson-Raybould wrote: “It is a pillar of our democracy that our system of justice be free from even the perception of political interference and uphold the highest levels of public confidence.”

Singh also pointed out that the demotion of Wilson-Raybould was met with anger from important stakeholders including the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs. “The Prime Minister has made a very clear decision to completely abandon the reconciliation agenda in favour of supporting business and industry,” Grand Chief Stewart Phillip said of the move.