OTTAWA – The clerk of the privy Council, Michael Wernick, says that the article at the origin of the case of SNC-Lavalin group contains errors and is flirting with the same “defamation”.
The highest ranking official in the government book, a testimony with aplomb in front of the standing committee on justice and human rights, Thursday.
He said that when he looks at the state of the country, many of the things of concern – including that “someone will be down during the election campaign” – but not the independence of the canadian judicial system.
The committee began Thursday its review of the case, SNC-Lavalin, which has plunged the Trudeau government in the lurch after the Globe and Mail had published an article containing allegations of political interference in the judicial process.
The ex-minister of Justice and attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould has slammed the door of the council of ministers a few days after the publication of this text.
Before Michael Wernick, the minister of Justice and attorney general, David Lametti, who appeared before the elected members of the committee, providing too few details to the taste of the opposition.
On leaving the meeting, he did not want to say whether he would produce his legal opinion surrounding the legal professional privilege that the former minister Wilson-Raybould invokes as a reason to explain his silence.
The one who is now single mp was invited to the committee, and it should come Tuesday or next Wednesday, depending on what was said by the chairman of the committee, Anthony Housefather.
According to him, the ex-minister could be accompanied by the former judge of the supreme Court, Thomas Cromwell, who advises on professional secrecy.
“Maybe she will be accompanied by Mr. Cromwell, I am not certain, but it is going to have a excellent legal advice, I guess, before she decided to come”, he exhibited Wednesday.
The opposition parties believe that the consideration of the parliamentary committee is insufficient to shed light on this story.
They have demanded the holding of a public inquiry through a motion which has been defeated in the House, Wednesday, by the liberal majority.
The prime minister Justin Trudeau has declined Thursday, the invitation to respond to the comments made by Jody Wilson-Raybould on the eve of the House of commons.
The ex-minister of Justice and attorney general seemed to shoot an arrow for the prime minister, who was sitting next to her, on Wednesday.
When she took the floor to explain why she abstained from voting on a motion calling for a public inquiry, she said she was hoping to have “the opportunity to give (his) truth.”
The former minister has taken care to specify that it was not “the lifting of the professional secrecy and confidentiality,” which is the spring, according to many, the prime minister.
The comment of Ms. Wilson-Raybould has triggered a thunder of applause in the benches of the opposition.
When Justin Trudeau was asked if this comment had cooled down the rapprochement that seemed to be operated, he has not answered clearly.
“We continue to have a party kingdom. We work together to deliver a tangible way for Canadians. (…) We will continue to work together with all members of the liberal Party of Canada”, he offered in the margin of an ad in Nova Scotia, on Thursday.
The prime minister has also stressed that the privilege was “a key element of our system of justice”, and that there was “the potential consequences are serious” lifting.