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CANADA: Amidst high-profile resignations, Trudeau loses another MP

Whitby MP Celina Caesar-Chavannes will sit as an Independent and doesn't plan to run for re-election

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau appears to have lost the confidence of another female member of his team, following two high-profile resignations from female cabinet ministers over the last month.

Trudeau told reporters on his way into question period on Wednesday that he learned from his office that Whitby MP Celina Caesar-Chavannes has decided to sit as an Independent for the remainder of the parliamentary session.

“I have just been notified by my office that Celina Caesar-Chavannes has decided to sit as an Independent,” Trudeau said.

“I want to thank her for her service to the Liberal party and to her constituents, and wish her the best in her continued service to constituents.”

Caesar-Chavannes is a first-term MP who announced earlier this year that she will not be running for re-election.

WATCH: ‘Remember your reactions?’ MP Caesar-Chavannes says in cryptic tweet after PM Trudeau remarks (March 7)

She pushed back at questions over whether her decision was linked to the allegations of attempted political interference at the heart of the SNC-Lavalin affair.

That controversy saw former attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould and former Treasury Board president Jane Philpott resign, citing a lack of confidence in Trudeau’s handling of the matter.

Both have so far remained in the Liberal caucus and appear set to run again under the banner this fall.

Caesar-Chavannes, however, accused Trudeau in a cryptic tweet earlier this month of failing to live up to the leadership expectations he espoused of openness and teamwork.

She later said in an interview with the Globe and Mail he had raised his voice with her when she told him on the day of Wilson-Raybould’s resignation that she would not run again. She said he later apologized.

However, it is not clear whether her departure from caucus is related to those concerns; she has not yet given a public statement on her reasons for choosing to sit as an Independent.

— Global News