The federal government says it is firing the suspended CEO of Enterprise Cape Breton Corp. after a report tabled today in the House of Commons concluded that he breached the Crown agency's code of conduct by hiring four people with ties to the Conservative party.
Rob Moore, the minister of state for Enterprise Cape Breton Corp., says he has taken steps to terminate John Lynn's employment following the report by the federal integrity commissioner.
In his report, Mario Dion said Lynn hired four people in 2009-10 without showing that there was a formal hiring process or that their appointments were based on merit.
'Our Government is committed to ensuring that we have professional, independent, non-partisan public service. That is why we passed the Federal Accountability Act and eliminated the revolving door into the public service.' - Kelsie Corey, speaking for office of Rob Moore, minister of state for Enterprise Cape Breton Corp.
“Mr. Lynn unilaterally hired these individuals, giving the appearance that they were partisan appointments,” stated Dion in a news release. “Federal organizations are required to be impartial and politically neutral.”
Lynn could not immediately be reached for comment.
Dion's report says without a comprehensive explanation from Lynn, the commissioner determined there was an element of deliberateness to his actions that could reasonably be expected to create a perception of patronage within the federal public sector.
“Mr. Lynn’s actions were incompatible with the trust that the Government of Canada and the public has placed in him as Chief Executive Officer,” stated Dion in his report.
Dion says in the report that while Lynn's appointment decisions were inconsistent with good governance standards, they did not amount to gross mismanagement nor did they affect the ability of Enterprise Cape Breton to carry out its mandate to promote development in that region.
Moore was unavailable for an interview Tuesday, but Kelsie Corey, speaking for Moore's office, released the following statement:
"Our Government is committed to ensuring that we have professional, independent, non-partisan public service. That is why we passed the Federal Accountability Act and eliminated the revolving door into the public service.”
Lynn was named CEO of Enterprise Cape Breton Corp. in May 2008, and had previously been a long-serving executive with Sobeys.