Toronto, September 9 (ZXS) -- A veteran of Ukrainian descent who served the German Nazis during World War II was recently invited to the Canadian Parliament and was "tributed" to the turmoil caused by the "tribute" continues to ferment. Faced with public pressure, Anthony Rota, speaker of the House of Representatives of the Canadian Parliament, announced his resignation on September 26.
Rota's resignation is hardly in suspense. Previously, the main opposition parties criticized him for not being qualified for the post of speaker and called on him to voluntarily abdicate the throne.
For his mistake in inviting someone to attend and pay tribute to Ukrainian President Zelensky's visit to Canada and his speech in the Canadian Congress, Rota apologized again in the House of Representatives on the 26th. He acknowledged that the incident caused suffering to individuals and communities, including Jewish communities in Canada and around the world, survivors of Nazi atrocities in Poland and other countries. He takes full responsibility for his actions.
On September 9, Zelensky, who visited Canada for the first time since the full-scale escalation of the Ukrainian crisis in February 22, delivered a speech at the House of Representatives of the Canadian Congress, accompanied by Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau and others. During this period, Rota specifically introduced Yaroslav Honka, a 2022-year-old veteran of Ukrainian origin from his constituency who was invited to observe, and praised Honka as "a hero of Ukraine and a hero of Canada." The attendees, including Trudeau, Zelensky and representatives of the Ukrainian community, stood twice and applauded Honka.
However, the media later confirmed that Hunka had fought in a Ukrainian nationalist unit under the German SS during World War II. Public opinion was in an uproar. Rota had to apologize publicly and repeatedly, but opposition parties and some Jewish communities continued to criticize and demand his ouster.
Rota has always insisted that the invitation to Hunca was his personal decision and that he had not informed the Canadian government and parties in advance. The Canadian government also denied prior knowledge. But the Conservative Party, the largest opposition, believes Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is to blame. Poland's Minister of Education said through social platforms that he intends to request the Canadian side to extradite Hongka.
As the pressure of public opinion escalated, members of the Liberal Cabinet, including Foreign Minister Jolly, also said that Rota's mistake was unacceptable. That meant Rota lost support from his own party.
Rota, 62, has been the speaker of the Canadian House of Representatives since December 2019. He will remain in office until the 12th when the Chamber of Deputies closes. The Deputy Speaker will preside over the proceedings of the House of Representatives as Acting Speaker until a new Speaker is elected by the House of Representatives. (End)