Questions about possible ethical issues continue to swirl around premier Doug Ford. The Opposition Leader, Marit Stiles has formally asked the Ontario integrity commissioner to investigate the circumstances around a stag and doe held for Ford’s daughter last august as well as the wedding that followed.
Stiles is not satisfied with an earlier opinion by the integrity commissioner that cleared Ford of wrongdoing. Guests who attended the stag-and-do were asked to pay $150 and some were subsequently approached to make additional gifts to Ford’s daughter and her groom. Many of the guests were developers and other individuals with ties to the government. The integrity commissioner accepted Ford’s assurances that the guests were long standing friends of the family and that no government business was discussed at the events.
In her letter today, Stiles told the Integrity Commissioner, “some (of the guests) expressed concern about risking their professional reputations by being seen as “trying to gain influence by paying for his daughter’s wedding.” She went on to say that some of the guests did not consider themselves longtime friends of the Ford Family-“but as government stakeholders-and feared impacts on their professional reputations and working relationships with the government.”
The move by Stiles comes on the same day as the Toronto Star published a story saying Provincial appointees and a lobbyist joined prominent developers as guests at the wedding of Premier Doug Ford’s daughter. The newspaper had obtained a seating chart of those attending the wedding reception.
“One guest was appointed by Ford’s cabinet to sit on a provincial agency two months after sharing a table with the premier at the September wedding,” the story continued, “Another guest was a lobbyist who is now working for a developer pushing the province to redesignate Greenbelt land to build homes.”
There are separate investigations underway about the decision to open up parts of the greenbelt and whether developers may have been given advance notice, something Ford has denied..
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