Former “Ethical Oil” Chief and Conservative Staffer’s Mom Gets Plum Govt Appointment


Read this story from Embassy Magazine on the recent appointment of former top federal Conservative staffer and Ethical Oil spokesperson Alykhan Velshi’s mother to the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission – which has led the Opposition to denounce the move as a patronage appointment. (Jan. 6, 2011)

The mother of a top Conservative staffer and former adviser to Immigration Minister Jason Kenney is the newest member of the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, raising opposition concerns over whether it was a patronage appointment.

Rumina Velshi recently retired from a decades-long career with Ontario Power Generation. She is the mother of Alykhan Velshi, a lawyer in his late 20s from Toronto, who made a name for himself on Parliament Hill over five years on and off as a Conservative staffer.

Most notably, he worked as Mr. Kenney’s director of parliamentary affairs and communications before the 2011 federal election. He defended Mr. Kenney on several controversial topics, including when the federal government blocked outspoken former British MP George Galloway from Canada in March 2009, based on what it believed was his support for the Palestinian group Hamas. Mr. Galloway later filed a lawsuit against Mr. Velshi and his boss, claiming that they had defamed him.

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About Damien Gillis

Damien Gillis is a Vancouver-based documentary filmmaker with a focus on environmental and social justice issues - especially relating to water, energy, and saving Canada's wild salmon - working with many environmental organizations in BC and around the world. He is the co-founder, along with Rafe Mair, of The Common Sense Canadian, and a board member of both the BC Environmental Network and the Haig-Brown Institute.