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Three Vancouver councillors dispute party's selection of 2022 mayoral candidate

BY The Canadian Press, Apr 7, 2021 12:26 PM - REPORT AN ERROR

Three city councillors in Vancouver say they have been blindsided by their party's announcement of a mayoral candidate to represent the Non-Partisan Association in next year's civic election. (Photo - Sarah Kirby Yung/Twitter)

Three city councillors in Vancouver say they have been blindsided by their party's announcement of a mayoral candidate to represent the Non-Partisan Association in next year's civic election.

An online statement posted by NPA Coun. Sarah Kirby-Yung, and signed by councillors Lisa Dominato and Colleen Hardwick, says they are "extremely disappointed" their party did not offer an "open, transparent and democratic" call for candidates.

The statement says the three only learned the NPA had named park board commissioner John Coupar as its mayoral candidate shortly before the selection was made public earlier this week.

Kirby-Yung says without an open call for candidates, the party has "eliminated any opportunity for elected women in the NPA caucus to participate" or for any others to seek Vancouver's top elected post.

The NPA, formed by Vancouver business leaders more than 80 years ago in response to the growing popularity of the left-leaning Co-operative Commonwealth Federation, currently has four members, all women, on city council.

The fourth member, Melissa De Genova, a two-term councillor, did not add her name to Kirby-Yung's statement after earlier retweeting news of Coupar's endorsement.

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