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Martin Coiteux apologizes for answering English question in French

Martin Coiteux apologizes for answering English question in French
WATCH: Quebec public security minister Martin Coiteux has apologized for answering an English question in French during Question Period. Global's Raquel Fletcher reports.

Quebec Public Security Minister Martin Coiteux is under fire for responding in French after being asked a question in English by Québec Solidare MNA Amir Khadir during Question Period Tuesday.

READ MORE: Quebec public security minister Martin Coiteux on falling in love with Montreal’s West Island

The MNA for Nelligan, in Montreal’s West Island, insisted he was respecting the tradition of the National Assembly, but many English-speakers say he showed a lack of respect to the province’s anglophone community.

Typically, MNAs are allowed to use either official language, as Section 133 of the 1867 Constitution Act states that French or English may be used in debates in the National Assembly.

WATCH BELOW: Martin Coiteux, in love with the West Island

Martin Coiteux, in love with the West Island
Martin Coiteux, in love with the West Island

Khadir explained he fears anglophones don’t hear enough about allegations of corruption in the government.

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READ MORE: Former Quebec premier Jean Charest, Marc Bibeau investigated by UPAC: report

That’s why he said he purposely asked about the UPAC investigation of former premier Jean Charest in English.

” I was very, very disappointed that he didn’t care to say a few words to his constituents,” said Khadir.

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“I think it’s of utmost political and democratic interest that the English community hear firsthand.”

Quebec’s Community Groups Network (QCGN) spoke out about the language kerfuffle, reminding the minister that there are about one million English speakers in the province — and almost 45,000 of them live in Coiteux’s riding.

“This is an affront to his constituents and to the English-speaking community of Quebec,” said QCGN president James Shea.

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Coiteux has since apologized.

READ MORE: Justin Trudeau apologizes for answering English question in French at Sherbrooke town hall

This isn’t the first time a Canadian politician has refused to speak English.

In February, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau apologized to English-language minority communities for answering an English question in French.

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WATCH BELOW: Trudeau answers question in French

During a town hall session in Sherbrooke, Que., a woman had asked if there were any plans for the federal government to do anything to help anglophones in the province of Quebec seeking mental health services since they are often only available in French.

READ MORE: Justin Trudeau’s French-only responses at town hall under investigation by commissioner 

Trudeau later released a statement saying: “Canada is a bilingual country, and as such, I recognize that I should have answered questions in the language they were asked.”