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Tories, NDP seek emergency ethics committee meeting after bombshell SNC-Lavalin report

Global News logo Global News 2019-08-15 Kerri Breen and Amanda Connolly
a man talking on a cell phone: Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks about a watchdog's report that he breached ethics rules by trying to influence a corporate legal case, at the Niagara-on-the Lake Community Centre in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Canada, August 14, 2019. © REUTERS/Andrej Ivanov Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks about a watchdog's report that he breached ethics rules by trying to influence a corporate legal case, at the Niagara-on-the Lake Community Centre in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Canada, August 14, 2019.

Opposition MPs want to hear from the ethics commissioner directly on his bombshell report on the SNC-Lavalin affair.

READ MORE: Trudeau doubles down, refuses to apologize for SNC-Lavalin pressure after damning report

The Conservatives and NDP have requested a meeting of the House of Commons Ethics Committee in order to introduce a motion to get Mario Dion to appear.

Conservative MP Bob Zimmer is the chair of that committee and has the authority to call committee meetings.

Conservative MPs Peter Kent and Jacques Gourde, who are on the committee, sent a letter to Zimmer on Thursday asking him to do just that in order to invite Dion to testify on what they described as the "grave situation" outlined in his report.

“Not only is Mr. Trudeau the first prime minister to have been found guilty of breaking the law, he is a repeat offender," the letter stated.

"Canadians deserve fulsome answers to the many remaining questions."

TIMELINE: What’s happened so far in the SNC-Lavalin affair

NDP MP Charlie Angus said on Twitter that he has also sent a letter calling for an emergency meeting.

In addition to Dion, he wants the committee to hear from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Finance Minister Bill Morneau and Trudeau's adviser Ben Chin.

Liberal MPs hold the majority of seats on the ethics committee so if a meeting is called, it's unlikely the Tory motion would pass.

A media release from the Conservative Party notes that then-ethics commissioner Mary Dawson appeared before the same committee following the release of her report that found Trudeau's 2016 visit to the Aga Khan's private island went against ethics rules.

READ MORE: Trudeau broke ethics rules over SNC-Lavalin affair, 2nd ethics violation since 2015

Dion's report, released Wednesday, found that Trudeau violated conflict-of-interest rules by attempting to interfere in the corruption case against the Quebec engineering giant.

Former attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould said in February she was pressured by key officials in the Trudeau administration to resolve criminal charges against the company through a deferred prosecution agreement, a new legal tool comparable to a plea deal.

Trudeau said he accepts responsibility for the ethics commissioner's findings but is not apologizing for "standing up for Canadian jobs."

With files from the Canadian Press

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