Governor General Mary Simon still has work to do to improve her French, says Quebec premier

One day after meeting with Governor General of Canada Mary Simon, Quebec Premier François Legault says she still has "more work to do" to improve her French language skills.

Simon sparked controversy when she was appointed to the position in July 2021 because she did not speak the language. Following her appointment, she said she was "firmly committed" to learning French. 

In addition to any French she's picked up since then, Simon speaks Inuktitut and English. 

On her first visit to Quebec City on Wednesday, she was greeted by Legault, who says he spoke to her in French and English.

In a press scrum Thursday, he stated it is not ideal that such an important person does not speak one of the country's official languages.

He says she told him she is taking courses and could string together a few sentences.

The Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ) has advocated to abolish the position of the province's lieutenant governor, Simon's representative in Quebec, but Legault admits it is not a priority for all Quebecers.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published in French on May 5, 2022.

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