Liberal MP who led committee shutdown denies coverup, says it's time for 'shift' in SNC-Lavalin debate

Posted In: News Date:Mar 15th, 2019

The Liberal MP who triggered the sudden adjournment of an emergency meeting of the Commons justice committee Wednesday insists there's been no attempt by the government to cover up the SNC-Lavalin affair, and says it's time to turn the page on the controversy.

Francis Drouin suggested the opposition Conservative and NDP members were playing politics by calling the meeting during March break, since a session to determine next steps had already been scheduled for Mar. 19.

The opposition members forced Wednesday's meeting to debate a motion to invite former justice minister and attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould back before the committee to testify for a second time about what she claims was a concerted effort by high-level government officials, including people in the Prime Minister's Office, to interfere with her decision to allow bribery charges against SNC-Lavalin to proceed to trial.

Drouin — who is not a member of the committee and was filling in for another MP who was unavailable — said he believes it's unnecessary to bring Wilson-Raybould back. He said she can provide the committee with a written statement and noted she's testified before the committee for nearly four hours already.

"I think I've heard enough," he said in an interview with CBC Radio's Ottawa Morning. "Ms. Wilson-Raybould has said, in response to Elizabeth May and Nathan Cullen, that nothing illegal was committed, nothing criminal was committed. So now the conversation has to shift between whether or not the attorney general and the minister of justice, those roles should be split."


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