Canada finance minister Bill Morneau has resigned amid reports of tensions with prime minister Justin Trudeau. In recent months, Morneau has been embroiled in a charity scandal and faced allegations of conflict of interest with Trudeau.

“I met with the prime minister today to inform him that I did not plan to run again in the next election,” said Morneau. “It has never been my plan to run for more than two federal election cycles,” he added.

Morneau also said he felt he was no longer the right person for his role in Trudeau’s cabinet. However, he said it was not the WE scandal that prompted his decision to resign. “I wish that, in hindsight, that we had done things differently around the WE charity,” he said.

Earlier this month, opposition parties called for Morneau’s resignation over his involvement in a controversy with WE Charity. It was revealed that the organization covered the travel costs that Morneau had incurred while on overseas trips. Morneau eventually released a statement saying he realized he had not repaid the $40,000 in travel expenses and has since then written a cheque.

“I expected and always had intended to pay the full cost of these trips, and it was my responsibility to make sure that was done,” he said in July. “Not doing so, even unknowingly, is not appropriate. I want to apologize for this error on my part,” he added.

Trudeau is also facing scrutiny for his involvement with the charity. Trudeau’s family has worked for the organization that bagged the contract to administer money to students having trouble finding jobs during the pandemic. In return, the We Charity paid them a combined $300,000.

According to political science professor Nelson Wiseman, Morneau’s resignation was not a result of policy differences. “By firing Morneau, Trudeau is hoping to take the attention off himself,” he said. “I don’t think the departure was a product of policy differences, although the prime minister’s office would like to make it so appear.”

In his resignation announcement, Morneau revealed he had put his name forward as a candidate to helm the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. In a separate statement, Trudeau thanked Morneau for his five years of service as finance minister and said he would support his bid to lead the OECD.

Bill Morneau Canada finance minister Bill Morneau announces his resignation. Getty/ Dave Chan