The Helena Guergis and Rahim Jaffer scandal that broke out over a year ago had grabbed everyone’s attention, including my own. Then after a few months it was no longer top of mind and people had stopped talking about it, including myself. With this week’s launch by Guergis of an attack on the Harper government, the topic is back to the forefront and so are all the associated rumours and stories that never made it into the media. Even those that made it into the media were eventually withdrawn by the individuals that had originally provided the information.
So, as I’m reading the newspaper this week about how Helena Guergis has made herself the victim and the perfect poster child for women who struggle everywhere with false accusations that have destroyed their careers. Meanwhile, my mind goes back to the stories I heard from people that supposedly had a friend that was close to Jaffer or Guergis herself. Ofcourse, they’re just rumours right? But how can we be sure. A year is a long time for someone to tie up loose ends, shut a few mouths, etc. by persuading individuals to change their comments or recall of what happened.
As a result my curiousity is now up and I’ve decided to start gathering some information to try and figure out what the truth is about this situation. The way I see it, one of the most significant aspects of the scandal was that Guergis allowed Jaffer to conduct commercial business out of her office, which was unrelated to Guergis’ parliamentary work and in which she accompanied him to business meetings in respect to his commercial business. Wow, that to me sounds pretty serious.
Here is the information I’ve gathered so far:
According to Wikipedia, Guergis was born February 19, 1969. Her family has a history with local politics. Guergis attended Georgian College, where she completed an Ontario Real Estate program. After her graduation, she opened a bed and bath gift shop called “Final Touch” at the Rainbow Mall in Angus.
Links to webpages that provide information to this have either been securitized or removed.
1. Helena Guergis, statement at a meeting of the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration, 14 October 2004. – access denied by parliamentary security system [http://220.127.116.11/committee/CommitteePublication.aspx?SourceId=85960]
2. CBC Canada Votes 2006, Simcoe-Grey riding entry – page has been removed [http://www.cbc.ca/canadavotes/riding/192/]
On April 13, 2010 Guergis’ former chauffeur told The Globe and Mail that Guergis frequently let Jaffer use her government-issued car for personal use. – “Chauffeur claims Guergis frequently let husband use government car”. The Globe and Mail. 2010-04-13. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/chauffeur-claims-guergis-frequently-let-husband-use-government-car/article1532461.
April 18, 2010 Ignatieff links Guergis to organized crime. According to wikipedia.org, they refer to an article [Ignatieff links Guergis, organized crime The Canadian Press April 18, 2010] with the following link – http://www.thespec.com/News/BreakingNews/article/754232. However it seems that The Spectator has removed that article. How convenient that now that Ignatieff is supporting Guergis whereas before he was linking her to organized crime. What deal has been made to cover up this story and gain co-operation between Ignatieff and Guergis – perhaps a plot to attack the Conservative campaign just a couple of weeks before an election?
On May 20, 2010 Federal Ethics Commissioner Mary Dawson fined Guergis for failing to report details of a $800,000 mortgage liability. Guergis had purchased the Ottawa house with her husband Rahim Jaffer in November 2009. Guergis reply was “I simply forgot and I accept responsibility for this oversight, I have already made arrangements to pay the fine — within the 30 days I was provided to do so.” – CBC News – Canada – Guergis fined $100 by ethics commissioner”. cbc.ca. 2010-05-20. http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2010/05/20/helena-guergis-mortgage.html. Retrieved 2010-06-02.
I’m beginning to see why Harper’s government no longer wanted her as part of their government.
If you have any information, comments or stories to share about these two individuals leave them below.
Links to articles and information about Helena Guergis and/or Jaffer and/or persons of interest:
May 27, 2010 – “Harper Told That Jaffer Misused Special Passport” – According to James Tavers of The Toronto Star, “Warnings that Rahim Jaffer was abusing a special passport issued to Canadians travelling on government business fuelled Stephen Harper’s doubts about the former Conservative caucus chair and his wife, Helena Guergis.” Tavers goes on “The warnings, coupled with misuse of Guergis’s cabinet office for backdoor lobbying, convinced the Prime Minister that Jaffer was falsely presenting himself as an insider.” – http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/article/814900–travers-harper-told-that-jaffer-misused-special-passport
September 21, 2010 – “Jaffer-Gillani relationship exposed in documents”. The Star article points out that
Documents show Rahim Jaffer and his business associates were actively seeking government money for a “green” project, contradicting the former MP’s assertions during Parliamentary testimony. In addition, The Star article points out that the documents add further evidence that the business dealings between Jaffer and Nazim Gillani were far more extensive than Jaffer had initially implied when he told MPs the two had no “synergy.”
November 10, 2010 – “Guergis asks, Are you voting for me?”. Guergis, who was kicked out of the Conservative Party this year, is again under criticism for mailing out taxpayer-funded material asking people if they plan to vote for her in the next election. http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/article/888409–guergis-asks-are-you-voting-for-me
December 15, 2010 – Guergis gives birth in Ottawa. http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/article/907438–helena-guergis-gives-birth-to-healthy-boy
More to follow…