Ethics commissioner at the Quebec National Assembly, Ariane Mignolet, has decided not to launch an investigation into Minister of Economy and Innovation Pierre Fitzgibbon over the controversial $98 million investment in Polycor, a company in the country’s capital.
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The newspaper announced last week that Mr. Fitzgibbon had dinner with his friend Luc Laperrière on the evening of the announcement of this investment. However, Mr. Laperrière has twice served as a lobbyist and consultant for Polycor since 2020.
Careless, say experts
Five ethics experts consulted by The newspaper believed the minister was reckless in continuing his close relationship with Luc Laperrière when the latter served as an advisor to Polycor last fall, in addition to other ongoing lobbying mandates with the Quebec government.
Following the release of our filing, Québec MP Ruba Ghazal asked solidaire Msme Mignolet hired to investigate circumstances surrounding Polycor’s $98 million investment.
No reason, says Commissioner
” Your request […] gives no reasons on which it could reasonably be supposed that the Minister placed himself in a situation in which his personal interests influenced his discretion or that he unduly favored the interests of Mr. Laperrière or any other person, including Polycor,” the commissioner wrote in a letter sent to Ms Ghazal this week The newspaper has received.
“At this stage there is no reason to believe that the May 4 dinner between the Minister and Mr Laperrière was anything other than a private dinner or that the latter was involved in the file leading to the grant of the subsidy to the firm Polycor,” said Ethics and Professional Conduct Officer Ariane Mignolet.
Expelled from the Council of Ministers
Remember that Mr Fitzgibbon has already been the subject of four investigations by the Ethics Commissioner.
One of these investigations led to his suspension from the Council of Ministers for three months.
– With the collaboration of Francis Halin