Canadian cabinet minister resigns pending investigation

FILE PHOTO: Canada's Veterans Affairs Minister Kent Hehr speaks during Question Period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Canada, January 25, 2016. REUTERS/Chris Wattie/File Photo

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canadian Cabinet Minister Kent Hehr, who was responsible for the sports and persons with disabilities portfolio, has resigned pending the outcome of an investigation into allegations of misconduct, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Thursday.

Minister of Science Kirsty Duncan will take over Hehr’s role during his leave of absence, Trudeau said in a statement.

Hehr’s resignation follows recent allegations that he has made inappropriate comments to women. Reuters was unable to verify the claims against Hehr.

Hehr confirmed his resignation from Cabinet in a statement and said he had been informed an investigation into these allegations has begun, adding, “I welcome and respect this process.”

(The story was corrected to remove a superfluous word in the first paragraph)

Reporting by Leah Schnurr