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'Resign now' banner taped on Rod Phillips' constituency office sign

Last Updated Jan 3, 2021 at 2:00 pm EDT

A banner taped onto Ajax MPP Rod Phillips' constituency office sign reads "resign now." The MPP is facing backlash for travelling to the Caribbean over the holidays while officials urged Ontarians to avoid all non-essential travel. CITYNEWS/Ryan Belgrave.

The backlash against former Ontario finance minister Rod Phillips continues after his tropical vacation during the holidays while officials urged Ontarians to avoid non-essential travel to stem the spread of COVID-19.

On Sunday, what appeared to be a homemade banner on bright yellow paper was seen pasted over his constituency office sign in Ajax. It read “resign now” — seemingly referring to Phillips’ decision to stay on as MPP for the region, while resigning as finance minister.

It is unclear how long the banner has been there or who posted it.

It was revealed last week that Phillips went on vacation to St. Barts for over two weeks, starting Dec. 13. He seemingly tried to hide the fact by sending social media posts during that time showing him in a sweater before a fireplace, supposedly in Ontario.

Hours after his return on Dec. 31, Phillips submitted his resignation as finance minister, but said he looks forward to continuing to serve the people of Ajax as their member of provincial parliament.

Speaking to media at Pearson International Airport soon after he landed, he called the decision “a significant error in judgement. A dumb, dumb mistake.”

Phillips is now in 14-days mandatory quarantine.

Ontario began a province-wide lockdown on Dec. 26 and premier Doug Ford has been blaming travellers for bringing the new coronavirus to the province.

Canada’s national government and the Ontario government have both repeatedly asked Canadians not to travel abroad during the pandemic and urged citizens to avoid gathering with family outside their household over the holidays.

CityNews has reached out to Phillips’ office for comment and is awaiting a response.