John Furlong will no longer be a key note speaker at an upcoming UBC Fundraiser.
The university says it’s to avoid controversy.
Furlong was originally set to make a speech at the ZLC Millennium Scholarship Breakfast.
But on the events page, the university says President and Vice-Chancellor Santa J Ono will replace Furlong at the event on February 28th.
According to his spokesperson Renee Smith-Valade: ‘UBC advised they made the decision based on controversy related to certain allegations’.
A statement to CKNW says Furlong is ‘disappointed’ and ‘he had planned to donate his speaking fee at the event to kick off the scholarship fundraising’.
The former Olympics CEO was caught up in controversy in 2012 when a published article accused him of verbal and physical abuse on First Nations students in northern B.C. decades ago.
Furlong has consistently said he was innocent of the alleged abuse and that the RCMP investigation never led to charges and nothing was ever proven in court.
In 2015 the BC Supreme Court ruled in Furlong’s favour related to a defamation lawsuit on the article.
The announcement of Furlong’s appearance at the fundraiser sparked backlash on social media.