Doug Ford responds to Metrolinx complaint: ‘I don’t direct or control anyone’ |

Ontario Premier Doug Ford is denying that his government directly controls communications at the provincial transit agency Metrolinx.

Speaking at an event in Ottawa, Ford said his government was not controlling Metrolinx. “I don’t direct or control anyone,” Ford said.

The denial comes after Global News revealed an internal email sent by Verster to Ford and Transportation Minister Caroline Mulroney’s chiefs of staff.

In it, Verster said he accepted “that Gov (the government) makes these comms decisions.”

The premier, however, denied the characterization written by Verster in the December 2022 email.

“I didn’t say we control it, we work hand in hand with Metrolinx,” Ford said.

Click to play video: 'Doug Ford denies premier’s office is in direct control of Metrolinx'

Doug Ford denies premier’s office is in direct control of Metrolinx

Verster’s email also raised concerns that silence over delays to the Eglinton Crosstown LRT was harming Metrolinx’s reputation.

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“We have taken a beating on ECLRT and we have lost credibility by not responding fully to this question 6-8 weeks ago,” Verster complained in the email after a leaked document showed no credible plan to open the line.

The message was sent to Michael Beaton, Mulroney’s top staffer, and to Patrick Sackville, chief of staff to Ford.

On Tuesday, Ford said he had never told Verster what he could or could not say and encouraged him to be open.

“I have talked to Phil Verster on this item directly, and I always tell him, ‘If there’s something on your mind, go out and say it,’” the premier said.

&copy 2023 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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