As I had written back a month ago, NDP Leader John Horgan had tried every tactic possible to persuade / bully / bribe the bit-too-outspoken Lali to step down in favour of Chief of the Lower Nicola Indian Band Aaron Sam.
But Lali, who evidently felt that that was just too undemocratic if not outright dictatorial, told Vancouver Sun’s Vaughn Palmer that if he had felt that someone other than himself could beat the Liberals, he would have stepped aside.
And Lali, who has won four times from that region (he was MLA from 1991 to 2001, and then from 2005 to 2013), is determined to be the NDP candidate – and the MLA – from there once again.
Lali – love him or hate him (he and I have disagreed and even clashed on issues, including the replacement of then-party leader Carole James) – is no puppet.
He will fight for what he believes is right.
In fact, he boasts about it in his pamphlet:
. 1998 – Took on corporate giant, Weyerhaueser Canada Inc., and saved over 100 forestry jobs in the Nicola Valley
. 1999 – Successfully battled leadership of Union Local in Boston Bar – saved almost 300 sawmill jobs at J.S. Jones Mill
. 2000 to 2017 – Openly opposed BC Liberals’ hospital and school closures and massive cuts to policing and public services
. 2015 – Publicly supported ‘Friends of the Nicola Valley’ and took the BC Liberals to task in media for secretly dumping sewerage waste in the Sunshine Valley – “Where was Jackie?”
. 2016 – Openly challenged the Tolko mill closure in Merritt, meanwhile local Liberal MLA went “Missing in Action”
So what does that tell you?
The scrappy dude in his pamphlet notes how he rebuilt the local NDP from 2013 to 2016.
So don’t expect him to lie down and play dead!
– RATTAN MALL