Harry Bloy resigns from Cabinet post in B.C. government over leaked email

By Cassidy Olivier and Michael Smyth

VANCOUVER — B.C. provincial minister Harry Bloy has resigned from cabinet after leaking an email to the subject of a Vancouver Province news investigation.

Bloy was minister of state for multiculturalism when he came into possession of an email the Vancouver Province had sent to the Ministry of Advanced Education seeking comment on Eminata Group founder Peter Chung. Bloy forwarded that email to Eminata, a provider of post-secondary education at six for-profit schools in B.C. that was being investigated.

Premier Christy Clark confirmed Bloy’s resignation during question period Thursday in the B.C. legislature, saying what the Liberal member of the legislature did was “not illegal, but wrong.”

Bloy wrote in his resignation letter: “It has been my honour to serve in cabinet for the last year but I felt it important to accept responsibility for my actions in regard to sharing an email with a third party. It was my decision and I accept that.”

NDP leader Adrian Dix pressed the government in question period on Bloy’s motivation for alerting Eminata about the investigation, but the government wasn’t forthcoming. NDP representative John Horgan called on Naomi Yamamoto, the minister of advanced education, to resign as well. Hers was the ministry to which the Vancouver Province email was initially addressed.

Bloy, the representative for Burnaby-Lougheed, was the only Liberal member of the provincial legislature to support Clark during last year’s leadership run. He was not in the legislature during question period and did not attend a government caucus meeting earlier in the day.

Chung is a frequent donor to the BC Liberals.

In the past week, the Vancouver Province has reported on court documents from the Superior Court of California dating back to the early 1990s. In those documents, it was alleged Chung and his companies (Wilshire Computer College) had committed more than 10,000 violations of state business code, including misleading students on employment opportunities and the school’s accreditation.

The school was ordered closed and Chung, who never admitted to wrongdoing, was fined $12-million. Chung founded the Eminata Group, an education conglomerate worth millions, in Vancouver about two years later.

“I never admitted to wrongdoing — to this day I don’t,” he said when interviewed as part of an investigation into student complaints at three of Eminata’s B.C. schools — University Canada West, Vancouver Career College and CDI College.

During that same interview, Randy Cox, Eminata’s president and CEO, was seen to be in possession of a printout of the email sent to the Ministry of Advanced Education by the Vancouver Province.

Asked how he came to be in possession of it, Cox replied: “People care about what we do.”

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