OTTAWA, Aug. 18 (Xinhua) -- Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau appointed Chrystia Freeland as his new finance minister Tuesday afternoon.
Meanwhile, Trudeau appointed Dominic LeBlanc as minister of intergovernmental affairs.
Freeland, 52, has become the first female finance minister in Canadian history. She has already served as Canada's international trade minister, foreign affairs minister and deputy prime minister and intergovernmental affairs minister. She will retain her role as deputy prime minister.
Trudeau made the mini-shuffle of his cabinet after Bill Morneau resigned as finance minister Monday night.
Morneau resigned amid an ongoing scandal of accepting gifts from a charity organization and reported rift with Trudeau.
Morneau told a press conference Monday night he was not going to run in the next federal election and that he only ever intended to serve in two governments. "Now is the right time for a new finance minister" to manage a long and uncertain recovery as Canada rebuilds from the economic downturn brought on by COVID-19, he said.
Morneau denied he was asked to quit and said he will run for secretary-general of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development.
In the past week, reports surfaced that Trudeau and Morneau were at odds over environmental initiatives and COVID-19 pandemic relief spending.
The Canadian Prime Minister's Office issued a statement a week ago saying Trudeau had "full confidence" in Morneau.
Canada's opposition parties have asked Trudeau and Morneau to resign over granting a student volunteer program to a charity group named WE Charity that has close links to them and their family members.
Trudeau and his government have been under fire since announcing on June 25 they were granting WE Charity a sole-sourced contract to run the now-halted student volunteer summer program of 900 million Canadian dollars (about 664 million U.S. dollars).
Due to public outcry over the contract, the charity and the Trudeau government announced on July 3 that they were ending the contract.
On July 13, Trudeau said he made a mistake in not recusing himself from cabinet discussions about granting the program to the charity group.
In late July, Morneau said he had paid WE Charity back 41,366 Canadian dollars in outstanding expenses the organization covered for two trips his family took in 2017, and that his wife has made 100,000 Canadian dollars in donations to the organization in recent years.
The parliamentary ethics commissioner is investigating both Trudeau and Morneau over whether they breached the Conflict of Interest Act in relation to the program with WE Charity.