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OTTAWA (LifeSiteNews) – Despite only recently saying he would not do so, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s “family friend” David Johnston, who was tasked with looking into alleged Communist Chinese interference in Canada’s recent elections, has resigned as “special rapporteur” under mounting public and political pressure.

“When I undertook the task of Independent Special Rapporteur on Foreign Interference, my objective was to help build trust in our democratic institutions,” Johnston penned in his resignation letter dated June 9 and addressed to Trudeau.

“I have concluded that, given the highly partisan atmosphere around my appointment and work, my leadership has had the opposite effect. I am therefore tendering my resignation, effective no later than the end of June 2023, or as soon as I deliver a brief final report, which I hope to be earlier.”

In the letter, Johnston wrote that Trudeau should hire a person with a high national security background to take on as “special rapporteur.”

“I encourage you to appoint a respected person, with national security experience, to complete the work that I recommended in my first report. Ideally, you would consult with opposition parties to identify suitable candidates to lead this effort,” he wrote.

Johnston wrote that a “deep and comprehensive review of foreign interference, its effects, and how to prevent it, should be an urgent priority for your Government and our Parliament.”

“Although I concluded that a public inquiry under the Inquiries Act would not be a useful way to deal with what is almost exclusively classified information, I recommended public hearings both to educate the public and to consider necessary reforms to various aspects of the government’s systems and policies dealing with foreign interference.”

Conservative Party of Canada (CPC) leader Pierre Poilievre said about Johnston’s resignation that “Trudeau has been flailing around for months trying to cover up the help he got from Beijing’s Communist government.”

“He has destroyed the reputation of a former Governor General all to cover up his own refusal to defend Canada from foreign interests and threats,” he added.

“He must end his coverup, stop hiding and call a full public inquiry into Beijing’s interference.”

Poilievre has for weeks called upon Johnston to resign considering his close ties to Trudeau.

At the end of May, MPs from all parties except the Liberal Party voted in favor of a motion that demanded Johnston be replaced.

A little under two weeks ago, news broke that Johnston, who has refused to testify before MPs as to his own involvement with the embattled Pierre Elliot Trudeau Foundation, hired the well-known crisis communications firm Navigator, at taxpayers’ expense, to help him deal with public backlash.

This move was blasted by Conservative Party politicians as “tone deaf.”

Two weeks ago, MPs on the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee voted in favor of preventing Johnston from having to testify concerning his dealings with the Pierre Elliot Trudeau Foundation, despite its alleged involvement in potential Chinese interference in Canada’s democratic process.

Johnston was first appointed by Trudeau as the “independent special rapporteur” to investigate alleged Chinese election meddling in March, even though he had previously been referred to as a “family friend” by Trudeau and was, at the time, a listed associate of the Pierre Elliot Trudeau Foundation.

When Johnston stepped down in 2017 as Governor General, Trudeau referred to him as a “family friend.”

Johnston had also recalled fondly his close relationship with the Trudeau family in media interviews before he was appointed “special rapporteur.”

In April, after reports surfaced detailing how the non-profit foundation received a $200,000 donation allegedly connected to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), its entire board of directors and CEO and president resigned.

The donation revelation came amidst an ever-growing number of reports alleging that the CCP had meddled in Canada’s last two federal elections, both of which saw Trudeau emerge victorious.

Despite the scandals, Johnston concluded over two weeks ago that there should not be a public inquiry to investigate alleged CCP election meddling because the matter could involve divulging state secrets.