EDITORIAL: Let’s wait for the investigation to begin and end

As the SNC-Lavalin affair continues, many are calling for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s resignation.

Last week, former justice minister Jody Wilson-Raybould said she had come under pressure from Trudeau, his senior staff and others to halt a criminal prosecution against the Montreal-based engineering firm.

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She said that from September to December, 2018, she was pressured to interfere with the investigation. Her statements are deeply concerning and deserve further investigation.

Canadians need to know whether the federal government interfered in this matter.

In a democracy, the elected leadership and those working within government must be held to a high ethical standard at all times.

Nothing less is acceptable.

When a prime minister or another member of the government is said to have “lost the moral authority to govern,” as Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer and others have said, the statements speak to the high value placed on integrity.

However, calls for Trudeau’s resignation are premature. The matter must first be investigated.

At this point, Wilson-Raybould’s comments are raising some valid concerns. Her testimony led this week to the resignation from cabinet of Treasury Board president Jane Philpott.

Yes, Wilson-Raybould’s statements need to be examined carefully, but so, too, must the words of former Trudeau chief of staff Gerald Butts, who is scheduled to testify before the justice committee on Wednesday, and others.

Once an investigation has been concluded and evidence has been weighed, appropriate actions should be taken.

To make calls for Trudeau’s resignation at this stage is to skip an essential part of the process.

The matter must be examined before appropriate action can be taken.

© Kamloops This Week


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