CBC’s “most trusted audio newscast” retracts false story about freedom convoy’s “foreign funding”

A CBC radio broadcast that calls itself “Canada’s most trusted audio newscast” retracted a false story about the freedom convoy. 

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“The World This Hour”, a radio broadcast from Canada’s state-funded media, the CBC, had to retract a false story about the trucker’s freedom convoy and its funding. 

The audio newscast aired on February 10 falsely claimed that the online fundraising platform GoFundMe disabled the convoy’s fundraiser due to “questionable donations to the group”, the CBC wrote in a statement. 

The government-funded media gave no explanation as to why it withdrew the story. 

The story published on CBC’s website in February was titled “Convoy Protest Received Hundreds Of Donations That Appeared To Be From Abroad”. In it, the state-funded media company claimed they conducted a thorough analysis of the convoy’s donations and found numerous foreign donors. 

“In recent days questions have emerged about how the protesters raised so much money so quickly and where it came from […] Before GoFundMe shut down the protest convoy’s crowdfunding page and announced donors would be refunded it had attracted more than 120,000 donations amounting to more than $10 million”, the article read. 

The state-funded media went as far as claiming the convoy might be funded by Russia, providing no proof whatsoever for the ludicrous accusation. 

The CBC posted another article about the convoy’s donours on the same day: “An analysis of GoFundMe donations by CBC News has revealed at least one third of them had been made by donors who chose to remain anonymous or who listed names that were obviously fictitious or political commentary”, Elizabeth Thompson wrote.

Thompson, a CBC reporter, wrote both stories regarding the convoy’s funding. 

In a testimony before the House of Commons’ public safety committee, executives from the fundraising platform GoFundMe said the vast majority of donations came from within Canada: “Our records show 88 percent of donated funds originated in Canada”, the executives testified. 

Also in testimony before the committee, the deputy director of Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre (FINTRAC), the national financial intelligence agency of Canada, said the freedom convoy funding did not come from “terrorism” funding or “money laundering”, despite the Liberal government treating the convoy’s funding using anti-terrorism tools. 

“It was their own money,” Barry MacKillop testified. “It wasn’t cash that funded terrorism or was in any way money laundering.”

“There were people around the world who were fed up with Covid and were upset and saw the demonstrations […] I believe they just wanted to support the cause”, he said. 

On February 15, the Trudeau government froze the account of many Canadians who donated to the freedom convoy, evoking the Proceeds Of Crime And Terrorist Financing Act, a law passed after the September 2001 attacks in the United States. 

The Trudeau government proved to be dishonest in its reasons for invoking the act, claiming the funds should be considered as terrorism funding as a large portion of it came from abroad, a statement which was later proved false. 

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