Canadian News

BREAKING: Ford says he knew of jet-setting minister's vacation to Caribbean

In an apology statement released yesterday, Phillips said that had he "been aware then of the eventual December 26 Province wide shutdown, we would have canceled the trip."

Roberto Wakerell-Cruz Montreal, QC
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Ontario Premier Doug Ford said that he and Finance Minister Rod Phillips would have a "very tough conversation" following the discovery that the minister departed on a Caribbean vacation earlier this month.

Ford said  Phillips would return to Canada tomorrow, and said that he is "upset and frustrated" by the minister's decision to leave the country. Ford added that the trip was "unacceptable," according to CBC.

The premier's office said on Tuesday that Ford was not aware of the minister's trip, and had learned of Phillips' trip after he had departed. On Tuesday, Ford said.

On Wednesday, Ford clarified that he did it fact know of Phillips' travels. "I did call him shortly after he arrived and I asked him and he said he was away."

"My mistake, and I take full responsibility. At that time, I should have said get your backside back into Ontario and I didn't do that," Ford told reporters.

Phillips came under additional scrutiny after it was found that the minister had pre-recorded videos of himself in Canada to be posted on to social media while he was on his vacation to Saint Barthelemy.

In an apology statement released yesterday, Phillips said that had he "been aware then of the eventual December 26 Province wide shutdown, we would have canceled the trip."

"I have continued my work daily as the Minister of Finance and MPP for Ajax including dozens of digital Ministry, constituency and cabinet committee calls calls meeting and meetings... We will continue to observe public health directives including the 14 day quarantine."

UPDATE: This article has been updated to clarify that Ford has known about Phillips' vacation since some time in mid-December.

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