NDP calls on Sask. Party minister to clarify Crown president’s public endorsement of federal Conservative candidate

The Saskatchewan NDP is seeking government response on an endorsement of a federal party candidate by the president of SaskWater, which in turn was publicly amplified by Cabinet Minister and MLA for Meadow Lake Jeremy Harrison.  

“This issue is about the people of Saskatchewan being able to trust that the Sask. Party are managing our Crown Corporations in a responsible and ethical manner,” said NDP Critic for Ethics and Democracy David Forbes. “There are some concerns here, so we expect the Minister to take the appropriate actions and restore that trust.”

A press release sent out last week by Gary Vidal, who is seeking the Conservative nomination for the Desnethé-Missinippi-Churchill River riding, included an endorsement from Doug Matthies identifying him as President of SaskWater, giving the impression that a provincially owned Crown Corporation was engaging in partisan political activity. The press release was shared by Harrison on his Twitter account.

In response to the violation, Forbes has sent a letter to the Minister responsible for SaskWater Bronwyn Eyre (attached) asking her to investigate the circumstances around the endorsement and report her findings to the public.

“We have seen in the past how Sask. Party politicians have used the privilege of public office to serve their own partisan and private interests,” Forbes said. “Former MLA Bill Boyd, for example, falsely presented himself as a cabinet minister while pursuing his private business interests in China. These actions corrode the trust that Saskatchewan people have in this government’s management of our publicly owned Crown Corporations.”