NDP MLA Leonard Krog has held the Nanaimo seat since 2005. (Tom Fletcher/Black Press)

B.C. Liberals’ hopes high as Nanaimo by-election approaches

Historically safe NDP seat vacated by long-time MLA Leonard Krog

The B.C. NDP’s hold on government becomes more precarious with long-time MLA Leonard Krog winning election as mayor of Nanaimo.

B.C. legislature rules require that Premier John Horgan call a by-election for Nanaimo within six months of Krog resigning his seat, which he pledged to do if he was successful in the civic election. His departure brings the standings in the legislature to 42 B.C. Liberal seats, 40 held by the NDP and three for the B.C. Greens.

Speaker Darryl Plecas sits as an independent, expelled from the B.C. Liberals for standing for the job and cementing the NDP minority government. Plecas would be required to cast deciding votes if only one NDP or Green MLA is unavailable.

“I will be resigning my seat in due course and obviously that was the commitment I made,” Krog said Saturday night after preliminary results showed he had more than 20,000 votes, with his nearest competitor at fewer than 7,000.

RELATED: Krog voted in as Nanaimo’s next mayor

“We haven’t won Nanaimo since 2001, but the city is growing and changing fast – so anything can happen,” Parksville-Qualicum MLA Michelle Stilwell said in a B.C. Liberal fund-raising email that went out within minutes of the Nanaimo mayoral result Saturday evening.

B.C. Liberal Party executive director Emile Scheffel said “a number of well-qualified individuals” have already expressed interest in running in the by-election.

In a statement to Black Press Media Sunday morning, Horgan said he was “excited for the people of Nanaimo” to have Krog as mayor.

“He has dedicated his political life to serving that community, and he is exactly the right person for the job ahead,” Horgan said.

The premier remained confident that Nanaimo would stay NDP.

“Nanaimo has a long history of electing New Democrat MLAs and we’re going to work hard, talk to every voter we can, and we won’t take anything for granted.

“I’m certain we’ll gain a strong member of the BC NDP caucus to work for the people of Nanaimo on the issues they care about, like affordable housing, health care, education and child care.”

– with files from Katya Slepian/Black Press Media


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Owner of Lake Country’s controversial Airport Inn charged with assault

Raif Fleihan was charged with assault with a weapon, uttering threats and breach of recognizance

Okanagan philanthropists treated to moving speach on National Philanthropy Day

David Roche shared his message to the Association of Fundraising Professionals and non-profits

Mission Creek Regional Park in Kelowna partially closed on Saturday

Portions will be closed while crews finish paving accessible pathway

Kelowna mother looking for 14-year-old daughter

Trinity Erickson has been missing since Friday morning

Central Okanagan reaches for the stars with proposed dark sky preserve

The dark sky preserve would be located in Johns Family Nature Conservancy Regional Park

Indigenous Artisan’s Trail gallery officially launched

The mobile gallery will feature Indigenous art, fashion and jewelry

Vancouver police officer charged with sexual assault in apparent off-duty incident

Jagraj Roger Berar, 51, of Surrey, charged in incident alleged to have happened in Whistler

CN Rail confirms job cuts as weakening economy cuts into freight volumes

Railroad also said it was affected by a slowdown in the B.C.’s forestry sector

Port Alberni mom takes school district to court over Indigenous smudging, prayer in class

Candice Servatius, who is an evangelical Christian, is suing School District 70

Advertising restrictions frustrate Salmon Arm cannabis retailers

Retail prices off-putting to some, but businesses finding supportive clientele

New case of vaping-related illness in Quebec brings national total to 8

Quebec health minister considering tightening the rules around vaping products

Greens to vote against Liberal throne speech unless carbon targets toughened: May

Green leader Elizabeth May and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau met Friday, discussing common ground

Penticton RCMP reviewing sexual assault claims

Thirty-eight per cent of the sexual assault reports in 2018 were deemed “unfounded” by RCMP

Most Read