Trade Minister Mary Ng should resign.
In 2019 and 2020, the minister of international trade, export promotion, small business and economic development hired a company co-owned by a close friend, Amanda Alvaro, to provide her with media training.
The contracts totalled $22,790. While this is small change in Ottawa, as Ethics Commissioner Mario Dion noted, “There is simply no excuse for contracting with a friend’s company.” Period.
Full disclosure: I am friends with Alvaro, as well. She is a savvy communicator and an excellent strategist. But if I were a cabinet minister, I wouldn’t hire her firm. “Friendshoring” may be appropriate policy between nations, but not between politicians and their pals.
Ng apologized, but that is not enough. Cabinet ministers must be held to a higher standard than merely saying, “I’m sorry.” She shouldn’t even blink before she quits. That is what a person of integrity would do. But then again, Ng is not such a person.