Parti Québécois leader Pierre Karl Péladeau says Quebecor shares put in trust

Leader of the PQ, Pierre Karl Péladeau speaks at a conference at the Institut du Nouveau Monde in Laval, Que., August 13, 2015. THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Mario Beauregard

QUEBEC CITY – Parti Québécois leader Pierre Karl Péladeau said he is placing his controlling shares of Quebecor Inc. into a trust administered by a well-known financier.

Péladeau said the trust must be approved by federal telecommunications authorities.

The PQ leader has come under intense criticism from his political opponents who accused him of being in a conflict of interest for holding office and being the controlling shareholder of Quebec’s dominant media company.

Premier Philippe Couillard has said Péladeau must choose between business and politics while third-party leader François Legault has urged him to sell the shares.

Péladeau wrote on his Facebook page Thursday the trust will be administered by Claude Beland, a former president of the Mouvement Desjardins financial co-operative, as well as lawyer James A. Woods and businessman Andre P. Brosseau.

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The PQ leader added he signed a declaration stating he wouldn’t intervene in the editorial direction of the news properties owned by Quebecor (TSX:QBR.B).