Canada’s Justin Trudeau has been declared in violation of several ethics rules after failing to properly disclose the free vacations he was given on the private island of the Aga Khan, which the Islamic leader could have provided to influence him.
Prime Minister Trudeau and his family visited the private island of the Islamic leader in the Bahamas last year from December 26th 2016 to January 4th o2017.
The report claims that Trudeau violated four sections of the Conflict of Interest Act. Trudeau did not publicly disclose the trips, which could be a conflict of interest violating section 5 of the act.
Trudeau also violated section 11, with the commissioner writing: “I found that these gifts could reasonably be seen to have been given to influence Mr. Trudeau in the exercise of an official power, duty or function and, therefore, that Mr Trudeau contravened subsection 11(1) when he and members of his family accepted the Aga Khan’s gift of hospitality and the use of his private island.”
The Canadian leader was also found to have broken a rule against accepting private travel while in office and another rule “when he failed to recuse himself from two discussions during which he had an opportunity to improperly further the private interests of the Global Centre for Pluralism. Shortly before, Mr Trudeau’s family had vacationed on the Aga Khan’s private island.”
PMJT first PM in history to violate a federal statute while in office: "Mr. Trudeau did contravene sections 5, 11, 12 and 21 of the [Conflict of Interest] Act but that he did not contravene subsection 14(1) of the Members' Code, or subsection 6(1) or section 7 of the Act. "
— David Akin (@davidakin) December 20, 2017
The visits with the Islamic leader are not the first time Trudeau and other members of his government have come under intense scrutiny regarding conflicts of interest. Last year, the Canadian PM was accused of a “pay-to-play” scheme involving Chinese millionaires using his family’s foundation, which he later brushed off.
More recently, Canadian Liberal Party Finance Minister Bill Morneau was accused of a number of ethics violations relating to his control of shares in the human resources firm Morneau Shepell.
Shortly after the announcement of the report, Prime Minister Trudeau held a press conference in Ottawa apologising for the breach of the ethics laws, saying that he would in future speak with the ethics commissioner.