Dr. Mukarram Zaidi testified Monday at a hearing by the Law Society of Alberta that an "emotionally charged" Tyler Shandro, while he was health minister showed up at his house with his wife and demanded he deleted a social media post.
However, Shandro claims he wasn't crying and the post was meant to attack him and his wife after the doctor was disgruntled about doctor fee payments from the government.
The post on social media pictured Shandro with a thought balloon above his head.
"So every Albertan that I can kick off health care is another client we can sign up for Vital Partners. We're going to be rich," the thought balloon read.
Andrea Shandro is the co-founder/Principal of Vital Partners. The business offers group health benefits such as dental and massage.
“He was crying, emotionally charged, his wife was holding him,” Zaidi testified Tuesday.
Shandro faces three misconduct citations under the Legal Profession Act for different incidents.
It is also alleged Shandro used his position to obtain personal cell phone numbers, contacted one or more members of the public outside regular working hours using that information, and it's alleged Shandro responded to an email from a member of the public addressed to his wife by threatening to refer that individual to the authorities if they did not address future correspondence to his office as minister of Health.
The hearing, which takes place Tuesday and Wednesday will determine if he “behaved inappropriately by engaging in conduct that brings the reputation of the profession into disrepute.”
Zaidi claimed it was evening time and his kids were playing basketball when a man (Shandro) showed up at his house and asked his children to speak with him.
"Is your father at home I would like to have a private conversation with him," Shandro's lawyer Grant Stapon told the society those were the first words the minister said during the incident.
Zaidi threw on a coat and some slippers and proceeded to the right of the house to the driveway.
"I said ‘What happened?’ He said ‘Your post. You need to delete your post," Zaidi claimed Shandro said in the initial communication with him.
Zaidi also claimed Shandro told his children to "stay inside the house" something Shandro says he never said.
The exchange would last roughly two minutes, with Zaidi claiming Shandro was "yelling" at him for the entire street to hear. Shandro's lawyer said he was speaking loudly and no one ever came forward to say they witnessed or heard the exchange.
"He doesn't care about us he only wants his money," Zaidi said Shandro's wife said loudly.
Tyler Shandro then explained to Zaidi during the incident that his wife was receiving death threats from his post on social media.
A day before the incident occurred the Alberta Medical Association sent out an email to its members about cyberbullying. Zaidi said he didn't see the email until days after the incident occurred.
Shandro's lawyer claims the doctor made the social media post to embarrass the minister's family, thus helping him in their advocacy with the AMA to lobby the government to increase doctor fees.
"You know me, you know Andrea, why didn't you talk to me," Shando's lawyer claimed he said to the doctor on the day of the incident.
"I understand you're up upset about fees."
The doctor claimed he asked Shando what he should do to make things better.
"You've got to answer that yourself," Shandro's lawyer said his client replied.
"I'll delete it go home," Zaidi replied.
Zaidi then claimed the former Kenney government "villainized him."
Shandro's council will try to prove the post was not about being an advocate for health care, but about trying to embarrass the government and Shandro's family while leveraging the AMA's fight to lobby the government. Council also claimed that Shandro showed up at the doctor's house as a father, and a husband protecting his family.
Zaidi claimed his family heard the conversation outside, but council says otherwise. He would then proceed to speak with CBC and the Alberta NDP party to make the matter public.
Shandro is a lawyer who served as health minister from April 30, 2019, to Sept. 21, 2021.
He was the immigration minister from that date until Feb. 25, 2022, when he was made the Justice minister in Alberta.
"The complaints that have been made are all matters that have been publicly reported," press secretary for the Minister of Justice Ethan Lecavalier-Kidney said.
"Minister Shandro looks forward to resolving the matter through the Law Society of Alberta's complaint process."
The hearing is being held virtually and is expected to last two days, however, it may run a little longer as the doctor first claimed he had only slotted two hours for his questioning and had patients waiting. When asked if he could cancel their appointment he then told the society he had a family friend die and had to attend the 12:30 p.m. service.
The society will call other witnesses after lunch.