Report accuses Alberta premier of conflict of interest in tobacco case

Documents obtained by CBC News show that Alberta Premier Alison Redford may have been in a conflict of interest when she made a decision to award a government contract to a law consortium that involved her ex-husband, lawyer Robert Hawkes.

In a report released Wednesday morning, CBC investigative reporter Charles Rusnell says documents show that when Redford was justice minister she personally chose a firm which employed her ex-husband for a government tobacco-litigation contract, which has the potential to be worth tens of millions of dollars.

Redford has remained close with Hawkes after their divorce and he headed her transition team when she became premier in October 2011.

Already Wednesday morning, opposition members were crying foul over the CBC report:

This latest report comes as the Wildrose puts pressure on Redford to answer more questions during question period, in a campaign which included a Wild-West-style wanted poster the party released Tuesday.

“We believe if you truly want to have transparency and openness, the premier should be prepared to stand and answer questions on policy and accountability of her government,” Wildrose leader Danielle Smith told the Edmonton Journal. “She’s clearly not prepared to do that and we are hoping to press her to make a commitment to this legislature that she will be here.”

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