Dhaliwal Had Lost Last Federal Election To NDP’s Jinny Sims
By Sunil Narula
At a time when many MLAs have deserted the Liberal Party, former Liberal MP Sukh Dhaliwal has thrown his weight behind Christy Clark. Dhaliwal announced he will run in the next BC provincial election in May 2013 from Surrey-Panorma.
Dhaliwal now wants another bout with the NDP and his fight in Surrey-Panorma will be against NDP’s Amrik Mahil. Dhaliwal had lost the last federal election to NDP’s Jinny Sims in the Newton-North Delta riding last year and this time again it will be a challenge for him against Mahil as Liberal numbers and popularity have been declining in the province.
But Dhaliwal appeared confident while announcing his decision to run in BC provincial elections.
“British Columbia is at a crucial point in history and the BC Liberals are the best option for our province’s economy,” Dhaliwal said in a statement released with the announcement.
In the past Dhaliwal has served as Newton-North Delta MP from 2006 to 2011 till he was defeated by NDP’s Jinny Sims last year.
Dhaliwal’s decision is also quite unusual. While most aspire to go from provincial to federal, it is going to be the other way around for Dhaliwal. He lost in the federal election last year and now wants to slug it out in the provincial elections next year.
The Liberal Party also confirmed that Stephanie Cadieux will run in former Finance Minister Kevin Falcon’s riding of Surrey-Cloverdale, where she currently lives.
Falcon announced his retirement from politics in August after serving as MLA for Surrey-Cloverdale since 2001.
Dhaliwal lost to the NDP’s Jinny Sims by an estimated 1,000 votes during the 2011 general election, which saw the federal Liberals’ presence in B.C. reduced from five to two seats.
Dhaliwal is also now finally answering questions about a letter he wrote in 2008.
Dhaliwal wrote to a US District Court Judge on parlimentary letterhead saying he had met Ranjit Cheema at community engagements, and that the one-time Bindy Johal associate appeared fully rehabilitated.
This past May, Cheema was gunned down in South Vancouver, in an apparent gang hit.
“I made those statements at the time. I haven’t had any…interactions with him or of the others. I haven’t followed up so I can’t comment,” Dhaliwal was quoted as saying in a report.
As to why he wrote the letter in the first place, Dhaliwal says it was a request from Cheema’s family.