The Ethics Commissioner will have nothing to complain about, according to Pierre Fitzgibbon

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The Ethics Commissioner will have nothing to complain about, according to Pierre Fitzgibbon

The Minister of Economy, Innovation and Energy, Pierre Fitzgibbon, says he is completely comfortable with the Ethics Commissioner looking into this hunting trip.

Asked by journalists about the opening of a sixth investigation by the Ethics Commissioner into him in four years, the Minister of Economy, Innovation and Energy, Pierre Fitzgibbon, quipped by warning that investigations of the kind, “there will be others”.

The Ethics Commissioner of the National Assembly, Ariane Mignolet, accepted Thursday, at the request of the opposition, to open an investigation into a hunting trip made in October, by Minister Fitzgibbon, on an island belonging to a group of wealthy and influential businessmen .

Challenged by reporters in the halls of the National Assembly in the early afternoon, Mr. Fitzgibbon said bluntly: There is no conflict. There has never been a conflict and there will not be. The day there is a conflict, I will walk away.

“She will go through [the file] and she will say that there was no problem. »

— Pierre Fitzgibbon, Minister of Economy, Innovation and Energy

When asked who he was with on this trip, Pierre Fitzgibbon replied: It's none of your business.

It's my private life. I'm going to talk to the ethics commissioner, he thought fit to clarify.

As for the fact that he is the subject of a sixth investigation by the ethics since he became a minister, he retorted: I don't mind […] There will be others.

Convinced that the Ethics Commissioner's investigation will not reveal any wrongdoing on his part, Minister Pierre Ftizgibbon warns that investigations ” there will be others”.

According to information first published by Le Journal de Montréal, Minister Fitzgibbon reportedly took part in a pheasant hunting party in October on Île de la Province, a private island in the middle of Lake Memphremagog.

The problem is that at least one of the owners of the island would benefit from subsidies from the Economic Development Fund [established within the Ministry of Economy, Innovation and Energy], according to information provided to the Ethics Commissioner.

The commissioner also noted in the requests of the deputies of Nelligan and Rosemont – the liberal Monsef Derraji and the solidary Vincent Marissal – that more than 30 days after the activity, the minister had not made a declaration to the public register of donations. , hospitality and other benefits of Members of the National Assembly, nor even that the value of this activity could exceed the $200 threshold provided for in the Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct for Members of the National Assembly. x27;National Assembly.

In view of these regulations, the minister allegedly breached section 15 of the Code regarding conflicts of interest and sections 29 to 33 of the Code regarding gifts, advantages and other marks of hospitality, according to the deputies Derraji and Marissal.

For his part, Minister Fitzgibbon explained Thursday that he has frequented this hunting spot for 20 years, that there are good acquaintances that he sees regularly and that it is a private activity that he intends to continue to practice.

Adding that he had also had a meal at the private club on the island during of his visit, Mr. Fitzgibbon assured that he paid his bill and that he has no objection to the Ethics Commissioner of the National Assembly investigating this matter.

< p class="e-p">I think that Le Journal de Montréal should ask, via the deputies of the Parti Québécois, for a commission of inquiry. […] My private life concerns me. It is not because of the Journal de Montréal that I will deprive myself of seeing the good knowledge that I have, he launched.

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