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OTTAWA (LifeSiteNews) – Ontario Premier Doug Ford has been summoned to testify at the Emergencies Act (EA) hearings in Ottawa regarding the Freedom Convoy, but he has declined to do so and is going to court to justify his absence.

Ford said on October 17 that he had “not been asked” to testify at the hearings, but this statement has been refuted by the federal commission handling the inquiry.

Lawyers for the commission stated that Ford and Minister Sylvia Jones  were summoned “after multiple attempts to convince Ford and Minister Sylvia Jones to participate” which triggered the “legal measure to compel the two politicians to appear.” Shantona Chaudry, the co-lead counsel, wrote in a letter, “On September 19, 2022, Commission counsel requested an interview with them… This request was refused.”

It is clear in official documents that Ford’s administration had been asked to take part in the process a month before Ford stated he had not been invited.

The commission said it renewed the request “a number of times” and faced an equal number of refusals.

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The issuing of a summons to Premier Ford and Minister Jones is pursuant to Part 1, Section 4 of the Inquiries Act, forcing them to testify under oath.

The Act reads:

The commissioners have the power of summoning before them any witnesses, and of requiring them to

(a) give evidence, orally or in writing, and on oath or, if they are persons entitled to affirm in civil matters on solemn affirmation; and

(b) produce such documents and things as the commissioners deem requisite to the full investigation of the matters into which they are appointed to examine.

The Ford government is claiming “parliamentary privilege” as a legal way out of testifying.

News of Ford’s reluctance to testify comes after he intimated last week, while appearing publicly with Prime Minister Trudeau, that he stood “shoulder to shoulder” with the PM in his decision to invoke the war-time powers to crush the peaceful protest.

Ford made those remarks just days before a transcript of a conversation between Trudeau and then-Mayor of Ottawa Jim Watson was released. Trudeau had stated: “Doug Ford has been hiding from his responsibility on it for political reasons as you highlighted… [It is] important we don’t let them get away from that.”