Ministers, high official to grill on the WE affair

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The House of Commons Ethics Committee will hear from Youth Minister Bardish Chagger on Tuesday.

The committee is reviewing the decision to grant WE Charity the contract to administer the $ 912 million student scholarship program, which has now been discontinued.

Employment Minister Carla Qualtrough and Ian Shugart, Clerk of the Privy Council, will also appear.

Qualtrough is responsible for the department that officials concluded were unable to deliver the program.

According to the government, it was this ministry that recommended that WE Charity be the only group capable of delivering it.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Finance Minister Bill Morneau both have ties to the charity and are under investigation by the Federal Ethics Commissioner.

They apologized for not recusing themselves when the cabinet approved the recommended deal with the charity.

Federal Liberals also face more ethical questions regarding the implementation of the Small Business Rent Relief Program during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The government handed over responsibility for the program to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

The crown corporation decided to outsource it to MCAP, a mortgage lender that employs Trudeau’s chief of staff husband, Katie Telford.

The Prime Minister’s Office said CMHC independently chose to outsource the program.

The office says Telford has voluntarily put up an ethics screen to ensure that it is not involved in anything that could benefit the company.

RELATED STORY: Beginning of parliamentary inquiries into the WE Charity scandal

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