Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Please Resign, Mr. Takhar

The Ontario Integrity Commissioner has found that Ontario Liberal Transport Minister, Harinder Takhar, violated the Members Integrity Act which says that all personal business interests must be kept in a blind trust [CBC Toronto, Integrity commissioner reprimands minister]:
Integrity Commissioner Coulter Osborne said Takhar violated that directive by appointing the chief financial officer of his riding association as the person responsible for handling his business affairs.
The Integrity Commissioner formally reprimanded the Minister.

Why is he still in Cabinet? This decision carries the possibility of having Mr. Takhar's seat declared vacant. If his seat is not to be vacated or Mr. Takhar suspended, why is he still in Cabinet?

Mr. Takhar has been under a cloud since June 2005, and he wasn't vindicated via the Integrity Minister. Who in their right mind believes that appointing the CFO from your riding association (somebody you work with) is putting your affairs into a blind trust? If he genuinely got advice that that was okay, that person needs to go too.

Honestly, Mr. Takhar has largely been unable to perform public duties as Minister without being peppered with questions. Now, with this reprimand, do we think the questions are going to stop?

Ontario Liberal Premier Dalton McGuinty indicated that Mr. Takhar had a "lapse in judgment."

Like Premier, like Minister.

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