Calgary

Nenshi's Uber rant a slip of the tongue, says Coun. Evan Woolley

Calgary's mayor is in hot water over some below-the-belt remarks he made about ride-hailing company Uber, but the man who's arguably the company's biggest backer on council said it was simply a slip of the tongue.

Councillor says the bigger issue is the suggestion known criminals were used to test screening process

Evan Woolley said the mayor's remarks were a slip of the tongue, but the suggestion criminals were used to test Uber's screening needs to be addressed. (Andrew Brown/CBC)

Calgary's mayor is in hot water over some below-the-belt remarks he made about ride-hailing company Uber, but the man who's arguably the company's biggest backer on council said it was simply a slip of the tongue.

"It's one of the things about politics, you're sometimes candid when you shouldn't be. I don't have a lot of comment other than, in my opinion, we need to move forward with companies like Uber and Lyft operating in Calgary," Ward 8 Coun. Evan Woolley said, at the opening of a new library. 

"And, yeah, a slip of the tongue but not the hugest deal."

On Friday, Mayor Naheed Nenshi was surreptitiously filmed while catching a ride with a Lyft driver, another ride-hailing company. During the ride, he called Uber "dicks" and said the company's poor attitude stemmed from its CEO.

"I've actually never met the guy," said Woolley on Uber's CEO. "I've been working with Uber quite closely throughout these negotiations and I've not had a problem with dealing with them at all. I've had a great relationship in terms of all of my conversations with Uber staff in Alberta."

What did concern Woolley was the mayor's suggestion the city used convicted criminals, including sex offenders, to test Uber's screening process. 

"I had not heard that, so I think maybe we have a council meeting on Monday there will be the opportunity for the mayor to answer those questions for himself," he said. 

The mayor's office was not available for comment. 

With files by Andrew Brown

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