TORONTO, April 8 Toronto Mayor Rob Ford, who has
admitted to smoking crack cocaine, on Tuesday hosted the
disgraced Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson at his city hall office,
with some media reports saying Johnson had joined his
In a video posted online by a Toronto Sun journalist, Ford
said Johnson wanted to help the mayor get more votes in the
"I support Ben 100 percent," Ford told reporters with
Johnson by his side. "We've all made mistakes in life. I've
supported him since day one and that's the bottom line."
Ford has attracted global notoriety for a string of
missteps, including public drunkenness, and buying and using
Johnson, who won gold in the 100 metres sprint final at the
1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, was stripped of the medal after
testing positive for doping, then later banned for life after
On the 25th anniversary of those games last year, Johnson
returned to Seoul to warn the next generation of athletes away
from performance-enhancing drugs.
A representative from Ford's office confirmed that the mayor
had met with Johnson, but declined to provide details about the
nature of the meeting.
(Reporting by Alastair Sharp, editing by G Crosse)