Politics
Jagmeet Singh and his wife have ‘realized their mistake’ and will pay $1,895 as a gift for a rocking chair

Jagmeet Singh and his wife have ‘realized their mistake’ and will pay $1,895 as a gift for a rocking chair

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh pictured in an Instagram post from his personal account promoting the $1,895 Grand Jackson Rocker from Canadian furniture company Monte. (Jagmeet Singh/Instagram)

The NDP says it is working with the Ethics Commissioner and intends to file a formal disclosure report on an $1,895 rocking chair given to the wife of NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh in exchange for a post about the article on his Instagram account.

On December 10, Singh’s wife posted an image of Canadian furniture company Monte’s Grand Jackson Rocker to her Instagram account, mentioning the company. The party said Singh would reimburse the cost of the chair after CBC reported it was given to him and his wife as a gift.

On Sunday, Singh posted an image to his Instagram page of himself sitting in the same chair cuddling his newborn daughter, with the furniture company tagged in the image.

“The chair was given to Gurkiran in the hopes that she would promote it on social media. Jagmeet was not expected to post about it,” NDP spokeswoman Melanie said. Richer, in a statement to CBC News.

“We are working with the Ethics Commissioner, as we always do, to ensure that any gifts received by Jagmeet or Gurkiran are declared and that we are in compliance with the law.

“That being said, while extremely grateful, they have realized their mistake and will pay for the gift.”

According to the Conflict of Interest Code for Members of Parliament, neither Members nor “any member of a Member’s family” may accept gifts which “could reasonably appear to have been given to influence the Member in the exercise of a function or function of his office. »

Token gifts of less than $200 are permitted, but gifts over that amount must be reported to Ethics Commissioner Mario Dion’s office within 60 days, “detailing the nature of the gifts or other benefits, their source and the circumstances in which they were given.”

Failure to do so can result in a fine of up to $500.

“The rules of ethics are clear”

Democracy Watch co-founder Duff Conacher said expensive gifts given to politicians or their family members break the rules and should be investigated by Dion’s office.

“Particularly in a minority government situation, opposition leaders and MPs have more influence over government policy decisions,” he said. “And the rules of ethics are clear to every federal politician, that it’s not just about gifts and people trying to influence you, but anyone trying to influence your family and the ban on accepting gifts extends to your family members.”

Lori Turnbull, director of the School of Public Administration and associate professor of political science at Dalhousie University, told CBC that while Singh may not have broken the law, promoting a private company is a bit “strange”.

“It’s the company branding that strikes me as a little odd in the sense that clearly Singh wants the company to know that… ‘Hey, here’s your rocking chair that you gave to my wife, thank you’ , she said.

The prime minister’s office declined to comment, but said it was working with the commissioner’s office to ensure its members follow the rules. The Green Party would only say that it has never accepted gifts in exchange for promotion on social media. The Bloc Québécois declined to comment.

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