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“I’m sorry that I didn’t act more as a boss and a friend,” he said. “They did what they thought was right. And I am not a person who is going to ruin someone’s reputation and ruin someone’s livelihood and mess up their family to save my skin.”
Nenshi hasn’t travelled outside Alberta since February, before the first coronavirus infection was confirmed in Alberta.
The news comes after six UCP MLAs, including former Municipal Affairs Minister Tracy Allard, were demoted after their international travels were revealed.
Premier Jason Kenney’s staff Jamie Huckabay, who went on holiday to the U.K., was also asked to resign after outcry over his trip.
Nenshi said his chief of staff, Devery Corbin, holds a different role than the chief of staff in the premier’s office.
“She deals with very specific and very delicate files, but she doesn’t actually manage my political agenda in the way that the premier’s chief of staff does,” he said.
“The premier’s office is directly in charge of making these decisions, of highlighting these restrictions. My chief of staff has nothing to do with that. Nothing to do with the state of emergency or anything like that — it’s a different world.”
The mayor said both staffers booked trips to Hawaii after a November announcement when WestJet rolled out pre-departure COVID testing to facilitate travel to the U.S. state. That program makes it so Canadian residents are exempt from Hawaii’s 14-day quarantine when they arrive.