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Beleaguered Trudeau admits errors in corruption scandal

09 March 2019

"As prime minister and leader of the federal ministry, I should have been". "The context is a tough one, with potential job losses in the thousands", he said.

"I'm obviously reflecting on lessons learned through this", Trudeau said. "What it sounds like is, there was a constant stream of repetition".

She accepted the new post but resigned a month later after allegations of improper pressure surfaced.

But if Wilson-Raybould and the Director of Public Prosecutions had arrived at their final conclusion, the only objective outside advice could serve would be to have their decision reversed.

What was the nature of conversations between the PMO and two of its top legal advisers, Mathieu Bouchard and Elder Marques? "They have a very secure financial situation, with gross revenues of $10 billion", she said.

The Regina event began as the prime minister's former principal secretary, Gerald Butts, prepared to address the House of Commons justice committee.

SNC-Lavalin openly lobbied the Canadian government for an out-of-court settlement that would mean paying a fine and agreeing to compliance measures. She was given that opportunity and took it, a week later before the House Justice Committee. A vote of 5-4 defeated the motion.

Last week, Wilson-Raybould offered explosive testimony about the pressure she said the Prime Minister's Office exerted on her to allow the Quebec-based engineering firm SNC-Lavalin to avoid a criminal trial on corruption charges related to contracts in Libya. "My mind had been made up and they needed to stop - enough".

A day after Justin Trudeau skipped a planned trip to Regina for private meetings in Ottawa, Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale says the prime minister is "weighing very carefully" what he must do to reassure Canadians about the SNC-Lavalin affair. Butts repeated that refrain on Wednesday.

"The heart of the matter is that the prime minister and those around him believed that this is a real and significant public policy challenge that deserves a robust and thoughtful response".

However, analysts and observers suggest the true number could be much lower than that. It has about 9,000 employees in Canada and more than 50,000 worldwide.

Trudeau said the only apology he is offering today is to the Inuit later on a trip to Iqaluit for mistreatment during tuberculosis epidemics in the 1940s, 50s and 60s.

"I think that 20 points of contact over four months is not a lot of contact", he said.

The company had hoped to benefit from a new law that would have allowed it to escape with a large fine. It has already won a bid to build a major rail line in Montreal. "And I'm presenting myself as the most likely person that would have been informed, and I was not".

By comparison, according the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers, the oil and gas sector lost about 60,000 direct jobs between 2014 and 2017.

"(Butts') evidence simply defies all logic", he said. It was clear that he arrived in that committee room, which feels oddly subterranean despite being a huge space located on the fourth floor of a slickly refurbished government building, acutely aware that it would be politically disastrous for him to look like he was impugning Wilson-Raybould in any way. Asked how he can present a cohesive team under those circumstances, Trudeau said that question should be put to Wilson-Raybould and Philpott. The Liberals have long held that Wilson-Raybould would still be justice minister if Scott Brison had not chose to step down. She said Wernick indicated the primary need was to cover the roles and responsibilities of the minister of justice and attorney general.

"Over the past months, there was an erosion of trust between my office and specifically my former principal secretary and the former minister of justice and attorney general", Trudeau told an early-morning news conference.

South Shore-St. Margaret's MP Bernadette Jordan, who was appointed to the newly created cabinet position of minister of rural economic development in the January shuffle, told SaltWire she was "disappointed" by Philpott's resignation, but said her confidence in the PM and his commitment to gender balance remains unshaken.

Beleaguered Trudeau admits errors in corruption scandal