A Liberal Party MP has left the caucus after it was discovered she was employing her sister in her constituency office, violating parliamentary rules while paying her sibling with taxpayer dollars.
Yasmin Ratansi, the MP for Toronto's Don Valley East riding, made the announcement late Monday evening in a Facebook post, stating that she had "made an error in judgement by employing my sister in my constituency office, and I have remedied the situation, but this does not excuse the error I made."
Ratansi will now sit as an Independent while representing her riding, following an investigation by CBC News.
First elected to Parliament in 2004, Ratansi lost her seat in a close race against Conservative Joe Daniel in 2011, before recapturing the seat in 2015 when the Justin Trudeau led Liberal party swept to a majority.
In 2006, as a member of the Opposition to former prime minister Stephen Harper's minority government, Ratansi was highly critical of then-treasury board president John Baird for seeming to award friends of the government money.
“Mr. Speaker, Canadians were not impressed yesterday with the antics of the President of the Treasury Board,” Ratansi said in the House of Commons.
“The holier than thou minister was caught at the trough last spring, forking out a fat cheque to the Prime Minister's friend, Marie-Josée Lapointe, of all things for PR on his so-called accountability act," Ratansi continued. Not to worry, Mr. Accountability told the House, the contract was cancelled. However, Canadians found out yesterday he did not quite bother to also cancel the cheque to the PM's friend, and aid her the $13,000 anyway.”
“So long accountability, hello hypocrisy, with the added pleasure of another sermon from a minister under pressure. Maybe today, instead of another arrogant lecture, the minister will cancel the cheque to the Prime Minister's friend and repay all the misgotten money to Canadian taxpayers.”
It is currently unclear whether Ratansi will hold herself to the same standards she put forward in 2006, and request that her sister repay Canadian taxpayers for her misdeeds.