Blair claims he was fired in an attempt to "muzzle" him

A high-ranking provincial police officer who was fired Monday alleges it is reprisal for waging a legal battle over the appointment of a friend of the premier's as commissioner.

Brad Blair has asked the courts to force the provincial ombudsman to investigate the hiring of Toronto police Supt. Ron Taverner, a long-time friend of Premier Doug Ford, as the new Ontario Provincial Police commissioner.

The government has denied any political interference in Blair's firing, and says he has released confidential OPP information through his court filings.

Deputy minister Mario Di Tommaso was the one who fired Blair, and Blair alleges that was a conflict of interest because Di Tommaso was part of the hiring panel that selected Taverner and is therefore part of the case before the court.

Blair filed court documents today in which he argues that his firing by Di Tommaso is an attempt to ``muzzle'' him and is directly connected to what he calls his ``good faith efforts'' to try to get the ombudsman to investigate.

The NDP is calling for a public inquiry into the whole situation.