BC NDP leader John Horgan says he will be ready to announce his new caucus soon.

BC NDP leader John Horgan says he will be ready to announce his new caucus soon.

NDP leader prepares for new caucus

NDP leader John Horgan will be ready to introduce a new caucus in about two weeks he confirmed during a stop in Williams Lake Friday.

NDP leader John Horgan will be ready to introduce a new caucus in about two weeks he confirmed during a stop in Williams Lake Friday.

“I’m putting together a new shadow cabinet, giving my colleagues new responsibilities on how we are going to hold the Liberals accountable,” Horgan said.  “I will also propose how we can advocate for economic development in places like Williams Lake, the north and the Interior.”

While in Williams Lake, Horgan met with trade union members at a reception on Friday evening, and earlier he met with Tsilhqot’in Chiefs Roger William and Joe Alphonse, West Fraser and Tolko to discuss the Supreme Court of Canada’s recent decision on rights and title.

“My message on the decision is that this is an enormous opportunity,” Horgan said.

“In my 20 years of being in B.C. politics, whether it be in government, the private sector, or as an MLA, everybody you talk to in industry wants certainty.”

Most venture capitalists will factor First Nations into their business plans as equal partners, he predicted, adding it will all depend on how communities adjust.

“There’s fear and excitement at the same time. For the first time the First Nations are in charge and that’s exciting.”

Horgan said what he thinks about Taseko’s New Prosperity Mine proposal doesn’t matter.

“The joint review panel turned it down twice, not the NDP, so don’t blame the NDP or the Tsilhqot’in people for that,” he said.

“Taseko made the case to an impartial panel selected by the federal government of Stephen Harper and the panel turned it down.”

Looking back on May’s defeat of the NDP in the provincial election, Horgan said his party’s platform was too detailed of a plan based on the party’s expectancy to win.

“Our platform was dense and budgeted down to the penny.”

The Liberals had no plan, Horgan said.

“They were going to be debt free, they were going to be leading the country in job growth. Well they’re far from debt free, the debt continues to rise at an unsustainable pace and our job numbers out today have us second last in the country and we’re building ferries in Poland.”

In advance of a meeting where the NDP caucus will be finalized, Horgan said he has assigned himself to meet with and hear from citizens, business owners, trade unionists, and environmental activists, living in communities not represented by the NDP.

“I can talk to my colleagues in the North or in the Kootenays, Lower Mainland or Vancouver Island, but I have to go directly to people in places like Quesnel and Williams Lake.”

It’s all about establishing relationships, familiarizing people with his approach to government, and ensuring people know they can call him if they are not being heard by their MLA or if they have an issue they want to raise with government.

Horgan is 54 and said initially he was reluctant to take on the mantle of leadership because he believes government has to start talking politics to a younger generation of British Columbians.

“That means recruiting younger people to get into this game rather than people who are finishing a career and looking for a hobby.”

The NDP bench has about two dozen people under 45, which Horgan views as a generational change on the NDP side of the floor.


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

FILE – A COVID-19 vaccine being prepared. (Olivia Sullivan/Sound Publishing)
B.C. seniors 80 years and older to get COVID vaccine details over next 2 weeks: Henry

Province is expanding vaccine workforce as officials ramp up age-based rollout

Interior Health reported 43 new COVID-19 cases in the region Feb. 23, 2021 and no additional deaths. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
43 new cases of COVID reported in Interior Health

No new deaths, Williams Lake outbreak over

A COVID-19 sign is seen last spring at the First Nations community of Canim Lake (Tsq’ scen). (Martina Dopf photo)
Another Canim Lake elder dies of COVID-19

The man was the husband of an elder who died last month outside the community.

Pink Shirt Day is Feb. 24.
This Pink Shirt Day let’s ‘lift each other up’

There are several warning signs regarding bullying:

The COVID-19 cluster in the Williams Lake area has been declared contained by Interior Health. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Interior Health declares Williams Lake area COVID-19 cluster contained

Four new cases have been reported since Feb. 19

B.C. health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and health minister Adrian Dix wore pink shirts to showcase this year’s motto: “Lift each other up.” (Twitter/PinkShirtDay)
PHOTOS: B.C. celebs take a stand against bullying on Pink Shirt Day

‘We need to let young people know they are not alone and they can reach out to others for help’

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Average response times for critical “purple” and “red” calls were between nine and 10 minutes Feb. 19 in Metro Vancouver, with only less critical “yellow” calls receiving an average response time of 45 minutes. The longer than usual delay was due to a combination of factors, BC Emergency Health Services said. (APBC image)
After a night of one-hour waits for ambulances, union goes public with concerns

B.C. Ambulance Service says high-priority calls were still 10 minutes or less

NorKam secondary student Karis Wilson in the outfit that got her sent home from school on Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021. (Contributed to Kamloops This Week)
B.C. teen in turtleneck, lace-edged dress sent home from school for ‘inappropriate’ outfit

NorKam secondary student Karis Wilson was told the lace on the garment made it look like a slip dress

Vancouver Canucks left wing Antoine Roussel (26) tries to get a shot past Edmonton Oilers goaltender Mike Smith (41) during second period NHL action in Vancouver, Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Canucks cough up 3-0 lead, fall 4-3 to visiting Edmonton Oilers

Vancouver falls to 8-13-2 on the NHL season

Jessica McCallum-Miller receives her signed oath of office from city chief administrative officer Heather Avison on Nov. 5, 2018 after being elected to Terrace City Council. McCallum-Miller resigned on Feb. 22, 2021, saying she felt unsupported and unheard by council. (Black Press Media File Photo)
Terrace’s 1st Indigenous councillor resigns citing ‘systemic and internalized racism,’ sexism

McCallum-Miller said in a Facebook post she felt unheard and unsupported by council

Temporary changes to allow for wholesale pricing for the hospitality industry were implemented June 2020 and set to expire March 31.	(Pixabay photo)
Pubs, restaurants to pay wholesale prices on liquor permanently in COVID-recovery

Pre-pandemic, restaurateurs and tourism operators paid full retail price on most liquor purchases

Ghislaine Maxwell was arrested in New Hampshire. Image: The Canadian Press
Epstein associate Ghislaine Maxwell makes third attempt at bail on sex charges

Maxwell claims she will renounce her U.K. and French citizenships if freed

Most Read