Feds Cave to Public Demand for Shooting Inquiry
The federal minister of public safety has agreed to a full public inquiry into the mass shooting that began in Portapique in April.
Bill Blair issued a statement today agreeing to change the investigation from a review panel to an inquiry with the power to summon witnesses who will give testimony under oath.
The announcement follows a statement earlier today from Nova Scotia’s attorney general who abandoned the call for a review in favour of the more powerful public inquiry.
Both officials claim they are responding to public demand though family and friends of the victims had consistently called for an inquiry over the three months since the tragedy unfolded on April 18 and 19.
There have been public protests in Truro, Halifax , and most recently near Minister Fury’s constituency office in Bridgwater.
A growing number of senators and Members of Parliament have also joined the chorus, including Liberal MPs including Lenore Zann whose riding of Cumberland-Colchester is home to Canada’s worst mass killing. Zann also noted that she was not consulted in the decision.
The three who were previously appointed to serve on the review panel have agreed to continue as commissioners of the public inquiry. They include for Nova Scotia Justice Michael MacDonald, former deputy prime minister Anne MacLellan, and career police officer Leanne Fitch.
No other details have been offered about whether the change in structure alters any timelines. The review was supposed to start by the end of August and be completed with a final report by August 31st, 2021.
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