Toronto Housing CEO Nakamura fired
Keiko Nakamura has been forced out as CEO of the Toronto Community Housing Corporation.
Case Ootes, who was recently appointed interim managing director of the city's embattled housing agency, announced Thursday that Nakamura's departure came at his request. Her departure is effective on March 25.
"I have concluded that because of recent events, Ms. Nakamura continuing as CEO would be a substantial distraction for the corporation in its efforts to provide affordable housing to low- and moderate-income residents," Ootes stated in a release.
The move completes the house-cleaning of TCHC that began when a city auditor uncovered questionable staff expenditures and improper tendering of contracts at the agency.
Mayor Rob Ford led the push to dissolve TCHC's entire 13-member board, first through requested resignations then later by a council motion that removed four holdouts from the board last week.
After the board was dissolved, Ford appointed Ootes, a former city councillor, as interim managing director.
Ford has said the agency, which has a $600-million budget and operates 58,500 rental units across the city, needed a total overhaul in the wake of the spending scandal.
"I have been advised the Toronto Community Housing Corporation has put out a statement regarding Ms. Nakamura. We must move forward and keep our focus on the tenants and taxpayers," Ford said in a statement issued Thursday.
Critics, however, have argued that Ford's move to clean house has been too heavy-handed, and removed staff that were doing a good job of helping those who rely on public housing.