It’s safe to say that Bonnie Lysyk has Doug Ford’s full attention. Reeling from a scathing report on the province’s COVID response, Premier Ford blasted Lysyk for a report that portrayed the government as disorganized, often with too many advisors at the table. In particular Dr. David Williams, the Provinces Chief Medical Officer was singled out as being reluctant to give clear directives, unwilling to use the statutory powers that he possessed. The report said the province wasted time and resources ordering asymptomatic people to get tests, clogging up the testing system. This morning Health Minister Christine Elliott said she was disappointed with the report and that it “misrepresented” the government’s COVID response in some areas.
For his part, Ford was livid at the beginning of his daily news conference today. He said government officials had given Lysyk thousands of hours of time that could have been devoted to fighting COVID, instead providing information to LYSYK as she prepared her report. He went on to say that there were 28 pages in the Auditor’s report that contained errors. He told reporters that in writing this report Lysyk had strayed afar from her core mandate and capabilities.
Lysyk, in her news conference earlier, repeatedly told reporters her report was vetted by government officials for factual accuracy at every step of the way. She said everyone who was mentioned in the report had seen its recommendations in advance and actually signed a written statement agreeing with the facts of the report. Its not the first time Lysyk has been at odds with a government. She was criticized by the Wynne Government for writing a report that said the government had understated its deficit by accounting for pension funds in a manner that was contrary to accepted accounting rules.