Toronto mayor to stay in post for now

Dec. 5, 2012 at 11:13 PM

TORONTO, Dec. 5 (UPI) -- Toronto Mayor Rob Ford said Wednesday he's "very glad" to keep his job while he fights conflict-of-interest allegations.

Justice Gladys Pardu granted Ford's application to suspend an order by Ontario Superior Court Justice Charles T. Hackland last week that would have forced him out of office pending an appeal, the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. reported.

"I'm very glad I got the stay today. I can't wait for the appeal," Ford said.

His appeal could be heard as early as Jan. 7, the CBC said.

Ford has been accused by city resident Paul Magder of breaking the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act by participating in a February council vote that absolved him from paying back $3,150 he had solicited from lobbyists for his football foundation.

Hackland said Ford's actions amounted to "willful blindness."

The Toronto Star reported Wednesday's decision means there will be no quick by-election for Ford's post.

Clayton Ruby, Magder's attorney, indicated that was OK with his client.

"It would be inappropriate for the city to start down the complicated and perhaps expensive road of replacing Mayor Ford when this court has been able to offer us an appeal date within a month and a half," he said.

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