Update: Follow-up Article in Globe & Mail Further Distorts Timeline of Events


A further story by reporter Geoffrey York on the Gupta investigation again misleads readers about the actual sequence of events at the time the Guptas were vetted for our sale of a business aircraft. 

The headline reads, “Canada export agency knew of allegations against Gupta family when it approved loan, lawyer says” and the article’s lead reiterates, “[EDC] was aware of allegations against [the Guptas] but went ahead with a $41-million loan to the Guptas anyway, a lawyer for the family says.”  

But this is false in its description of the timing and is not an accurate representation of what was actually presented in the South African court hearing that took place.  In fact, the one and only matter that was publicly known at the time of the EDC loan and our sale of the aircraft was the Guptas reported use of a South African military base in 2013 to facilitate the arrival of overseas guests for a wedding celebration.

That single incident did not result in any formal charges, legal penalty, or sanction, and was apparently organized with the knowledge and cooperation of the government.  Even the Globe & Mail’s own brief, 170-word account on August 16, 2013, ridiculed the matter, calling it a “highly entertaining…extravaganza.”  

The timeline that was presented in the March 8, 2018 court hearing by the Gupta’s attorney also shows explicitly that the allegations and events which would have actually triggered a halt to the loan or sale all occurred after the vetting process in 2015 was completed.  Here is a link to South African Broadcast Corporation's four hour coverage of the hearing and a link to News24's live blog of the full hearing.”

Readers deserve an explanation for why the reporting on this issue continues to be marred by such egregious inaccuracies.  We welcome good-faith questions about this overall matter — but the resulting reporting ought to be accurate and free of distortion.  In the meantime, we intend to set the record straight publicly as often as necessary.  

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UPDATE:  This post was updated on March 19 to include the link to News24’s live blog of the full hearing

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Mike Nadolski
Vice President Communications and Public Affairs

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