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Mike Hayes, Recall Proponent 250-507-2204
Colin Nielsen Petition Coordinator 250-812-6593
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
Is EBC Sabotaging the Recall Campaign?
I read in the online news this morning that Craig James was concerned for his safety due to the recent events in the USA. While reading the article I questioned his timing and the repetition of what he perceives to be the Anti HST forces threatening him.
The situation regarding the threats was reported I believe, Last November. Quite extensively I might add. So why is it being repeated at this time?
I wondered if they had done a trace on any of the emails at the time to determine their source. The technology is out there. Why don't they use it?
The following press release was delivered to my in box and after reading it I could not agree more with Mr. Hayes and his crew.
Recall Committee Decries Threats But Questions Timing
Oak Bay-Gordon Head Recall Proponent, Mike Hayes, issued a statement, today, in reaction to published reports by Acting Chief Electoral Officer, Craig James, that he has received threatening and abusive email.” Hayes said that the Recall Ida Chong Committee condemns, in the strongest possible terms, the actions of anyone using threats of violence and intimidation in our open and democratic society.
“There is no place in a civilized and civil society for that kind of behavior,” said Hayes. “It is difficult to find words that express my contempt for such abusive rhetoric.”
However, Hayes said that he questions the timing of the Press Release from the Acting Chief Electoral Officer. “Why has he waited until the closing weeks of the Recall Petition Period to make a public statement about abusive emails and threats he received in November?” Hayes asked. “It would appear that he is trying to discredit the Fight-HST Campaign and the Recall, currently underway in Oak Bay-Gordon Head.”
Hayes pointed out that the Chief Electoral Officer is supposed to be an independent office of the Legislature. “James does his Office, and the wonderful staff at Elections BC, no favours when he appears to be meddling in the democratic processes he is responsible for overseeing,” said Hayes. “It is, quite simple, wrong.”
Hayes said that the controversy over James actions around the 200 word limit issue, as well as the timing of his announcing RCMP investigations into seven people who signed the HST Petition, just before the launch or the Recall campaign, all show a lack of understanding of his role, at best, and outright interference, at worst.
“How can the people working on Recall, and all those citizens who have signed the Petition, have confidence that this “independent” office will fairly oversee this vitally important democratic process?” Hayes asked. “I would challenge Mr. James to disclose all the emails he has received and to show how many he has received since the Recall Petition was approved and the Campaign has been underway. If the bulk of the abusive communication was a reaction to his changing the word-count rules in November, then I think it would fair to question why he has chosen to make his disclosure at this late date.”
I have no doubt that the people at elections BC are very honest and hard working folks. But what I perceive as a attempt to sidetrack the recall campaign by of all people Mr. James doesn't bode well for the peoples belief that EBC is non-partisan today.
And why is Mr. James still the TEMPORARY CEO of EBC? This temporary position has lasted longer than any other in the history of EBC. Why is that?Gary E