Kielburger says email to Morneau was about COVID-19 science, not student program

Craig & Marc Kielburger

OTTAWA — WE Charity co-founder Craig Kielburger is shedding more light on a controversial email to then-finance minister Bill Morneau this spring, saying it was about a possible second wave of COVID-19 — not securing government business.

The message was among thousands of pages of documents about the WE Charity affair the Liberal government released this week as it prorogued Parliament.

But like many of the newly released records it was heavily blacked out, making it difficult to know what Kielburger was communicating to Morneau.

Conservative MP Pierre Poilievre had pointed to the document in a news conference Wednesday as he alleged a Liberal coverup of the decision to have WE Charity administer a multimillion-dollar student-volunteer program.

In a statement today, Kielburger says the April 26 message included two reports from epidemiologists concerning second-wave COVID-19 predictions — reports he had mentioned to Morneau in a phone call the previous day.

Kielburger says the phone call, as Morneau has testified to a committee, was made by the minister as part of a series of calls to businesses and non-profit organizations on the impact of COVID-19.