VANCOUVER (January 5, 2020) – BC Liberal Opposition Leader Andrew Wilkinson issued the following statement regarding the unlawful eviction of Coastal GasLink workers from Wet’suwet’en territories:
“NDP Minister Doug Donaldson needs to immediately resign since he is clearly unable or unwilling to enforce the laws of British Columbia and act in the best interests of all British Columbians. Donaldson has consistently shown his support for the illegal blockades of the Coastal Gas Link project, completely ignoring the elected First Nations leadership, the RCMP, and the law. If he won’t resign, John Horgan needs to fire him.
“The NDP have a duty to the citizens of this province to ensure that the rule of law is respected and followed by everyone. It is totally unacceptable that John Horgan sits idly by while court orders are violated. When will he realize that he needs to govern for everyone in this province?
“Last week, the B.C. Supreme Court granted another injunction to allow Coastal GasLink access to worksites and said that the defendants “are seeking to exclude the application of British Columbia law within Wet’suwet’en territory, which is something that Canadian law will not entertain.” Respect for the law is not optional. When the BC Supreme Court makes an order, it needs to be respected by all levels of government and by every citizen. When will the NDP realize the law applies to everyone in BC?
“Coastal GasLink has signed agreements with all 20 elected First Nations councils along the approved 670km pipeline route, with the project bringing benefits to each community. Each community has been significantly engaged throughout this process by multiple governments. Respect and protocol were followed in the spirit of true reconciliation and rights and title case law. Projects as important as this cannot be delayed by fringe groups, and the NDP need to say so.”