Trudeau cabinet minister resigns amid controversy

Andrew Cummings
February 12, 2019

The Globe reported that the Prime Minister's Office pressured Wilson-Raybould to cut a deal with SNC-Lavalin that would allow the company to avoid going to trial over allegations it paid millions in bribes to secure government contracts in Libya.

"The issue of solicitor client privilege is not a simple one so I have asked our attorney general to provide me with advice on this matter", said Trudeau speaking on Wilson-Raybould's silence about the allegations after citing her "solicitor client privileges" during her time as Attorney General.

He says he continues to have "full confidence" in Jody Wilson-Raybould, who was demoted to the veterans-affairs portfolio in a January cabinet shuffle.

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The Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner also announced on Monday that he has launched an investigation in the case.

The company faces corruption and fraud charges stemming from business activities.

CTV News has not independently verified the story, and Trudeau has denied it. "I only wish that I could have served you longer", she writes. Wilson-Raybould moved to Veterans Affairs.

The ethics commissioner's office has found rules violations in two of the four investigations into the Trudeau cabinet it has completed.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called an emergency cabinet meeting for Tuesday morning, though ministers are in their ridings or fanned out across the country, so many will be teleconferencing in and not all together around the cabinet table in Ottawa.

It's highly likely that the issue was discussed by the prime minister and senior cabinet members, but that's not unusual given the possible ramifications if SNC-Lavalin has the book thrown at it for influence peddling and bribery on foreign soil.

Federal opposition parties have jumped at the allegations of political interference and are pushing to have some of Mr Trudeau's top aides and a number of Liberal MPs appear before Parliament's justice committee.

Other reports by iNewsToday