First Nation activist joins NDP in Manitoba for upcoming byelection

(Bernadette Smith’s sister Claudette Osborne went missing in 2008. Smith will run for the NDP in an upcoming byelection) 

The Canadian Press
WINNIPEG _ Activist Bernadette Smith is set to carry the NDP banner in an upcoming Manitoba byelection.

Smith was the only candidate to submit her name before the party’s deadline, and her nomination is to be made official Jan. 31.

Smith helped push for an inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women and co-founded a group that searches the Red River for clues to missing persons.

She will run in Point Douglas _ a seat in Winnipeg’s inner city that has voted NDP for more than two decades and that has been vacant since the resignation of Kevin Chief earlier this month.

The Liberals have set their nomination date for Feb. 2 and are accepting nominations until next Thursday, while the Progressive Conservatives have not set a nomination deadline.

Premier Brian Pallister has until July to call the byelection and has not yet indicated when he will.

Smith was supported in her bid by New Democrat legislature members including Wab Kinew.

“Bernadette’s done a lot of great work in the Point Douglas community,” Kinew said Friday, pointing to her work in a school-based youth mentorship program.

“I see a strong advocate and a strong commitment to Point Douglas.”

One person _ John Cacayuran _ has so far filed for the Liberal nomination, said Sam Dixon, the party’s director of operations. No information on Cacayuran was provided.

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