Major-Gen. Dany Fortin loses judicial bid to be reinstated as head of vaccine launch in Canada

Major-Gen. Dany Fortin lost his judicial candidacy Tuesday to be reinstated as head of the vaccine launch in Canada, a position he lost in May amid a sexual misconduct investigation.

Federal Court Judge Ann Marie McDonald ruled Tuesday that Fortin must go through the Canadian Armed Forces internal complaint process first.

She agreed to the federal government’s request to deny Fortin’s request for judicial review of the decision to remove him from his post at the Public Health Agency of Canada.

“MGen Fortin has not shown that the decision to remove him from office cannot be remedied through the grievance process,” McDonald wrote in his ruling.

“Therefore, you must go through the complaints process before proceeding with judicial review.”

Tuesday’s decision follows a two-day hearing in Federal Court last month.

Fortin’s legal team alleged in court that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and members of his government secretly decided that Fortin should be removed from office for purely political reasons, which the lawyers argued constituted inappropriate political interference in the internal affairs of the army.

They argued that it also violated Fortin’s right to due process.

Attorneys for the federal government argued that the decision to remove Fortin was made by the Acting Chief of Defense Staff, General Wayne Eyre, and that if Fortin was not satisfied with the decision, he should have followed the usual process and accepted it with the military chain of command.

A statement from Fortin’s attorneys said they were disappointed with the outcome and reviewed the ruling with him to determine his next steps.

“It is a pity that the court did not address the merits of the Major General. Fortin and instead determined that the complaint was an appropriate alternative remedy, ”the statement said.

“Our position remains that the military complaints process cannot override a decision made outside the military chain of command and that it lacks authority over the ministers who made the decision to remove the Major General. Fortin of its affiliation “.

Fortin was ousted as head of the COVID-19 vaccine launch in May amid a military investigation that multiple media outlets reported was linked to a historic sexual assault allegation.

He had become the head of implementation last year, providing regular reports to the public in his role as vice president of logistics and operations at the Public Health Agency of Canada.

Fortin was relieved of his duties on May 14, five days before the findings of a military police were forwarded to the Quebec prosecutor’s office, which determines whether criminal charges should be filed.

He was charged with a criminal charge of sexual assault in August.

Fortin has denied wrongdoing and maintains that his dismissal from his job was for political reasons.

The accusation against him dates back to early 1988 in Quebec, according to his arrest warrant. The identity of the complainant is covered by a standard posting ban. That case is due back in criminal court in November.

With files from The Canadian Press


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