OTTAWA- The Liberal Party is requesting that Ethics Commissioner Mary Dawson investigate reports that Minister of Industry Christian Paradis may have again violated the Conflict of Interest Act, said Liberal Ethics and Conflict of Interest critic Scott Andrews and Liberal House Leader Marc Garneau today.
“There seems to be a disturbing pattern of cronyism and abuse of office emerging from Stephen Harper’s Minister of Industry,” said Mr. Andrews. “Less than a week after Minister Paradis was found guilty of violating the Act for giving privileged government access to former Conservative colleague Rahim Jaffer, this Minister is again in hot water with new reports of potentially illegal activities.”
According to recent media reports, these new allegations date back to 2009 when Minister Paradis, then Minister of Public Works and Government Services, visited the exclusive hunting lodge of Marcel Aubut, former owner of the Quebec Nordiques, who at the time was in a position to lobby the Minister for help funding a new $400 million arena in Quebec City.
“This Minister has tried to excuse his lapse of judgement by claiming he brought his own sleeping bag and food to Mr. Aubut’s hunting camp, but it is clear that accepting such an invitation from someone who might lobby him or his government was completely inappropriate,” said Mr. Garneau. “The Conflict of interest rules are clear – ministers are ‘not to accept any gift or benefit connected with their position that might reasonably be seen to compromise their personal judgment or integrity.’ The Prime Minister must take this latest breach of ethics seriously and fire his minister.”
The Liberal Party letter to Ethics Commissioner Mary Dawson can be viewed here.