Wednesday 24 January 2018

All right, I smoked crack-cocaine maybe once, admits mayor

Rob Ford
Rob Ford

Rob Gillies, Toronto

HE may be in confessional mode admitting that he smoked crack "maybe once", but Toronto's scandal-plagued mayor Rob Ford still insists that he is a man more sinned against than sinning.

And yesterday he sternly told off the city council insisting that it had no business stripping him of his powers.

Mr Ford even went so far as to imply that many councillors are guilty of similar behaviour.

He said that he had "declared war" after the council acted in response to his admitted crack-cocaine use and binge-drinking, and a series of outbursts in recent days.

The council voted overwhelmingly this week in favour of slashing his office budget by 60pc, and allowing mayoral staff to join the deputy mayor, Norm Kelly.

Mr Ford retains his title and ability to represent Canada's largest city at official functions.

Mr Kelly said he'll make every effort to work with Mr Ford but said the locks have been changed on part of the mayor's office. The deputy mayor also cast doubt on Mr Ford's ability to stay sober.

"It's easy to go cold turkey. It's hard to stay that way," Mr Kelly said.

However, Mr Ford got even more bad news yesterday as the tabloid Sun News Network cancelled his new television show after only one episode. Kory Teneycke, vice-president of Sun News Network, said the episode took five hours to shoot and over 10 hours to edit.

Mr Ford's political support also further eroded. Federal cabinet minister Jason Kenney, like Mr Ford a conservative, called on the mayor to resign, becoming the first member of Prime Minister Stephen Harper's federal government to do so.

Mr Kenney said Mr Ford is dragging Toronto through a "terrible embarrassment".

Mr Ford has repeatedly refused to step down.

A newly released police document also alleges that a video that appears to show Mr Ford puffing on a crack pipe was filmed last February.

Irish Independent

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