Greens ex­pel Mon­treal lawyer from lead­er­ship race

Party cites vi­o­la­tions of code of con­duct

The Standard (St. Catharines) - - CANADA & WORLD - MIA RABSON

OT­TAWA — Mon­treal lawyer Meryam Had­dad has ap­pealed her ex­pul­sion from the Green party lead­er­ship con­test and was ex­pect­ing to find out Wed­nes­day if she will be let back in.

A spokesper­son for Had­dad’s cam­paign said the ap­peal was filed this af­ter­noon and the party’s lead­er­ship com­mit­tee is to make a de­ci­sion this evening. Had­dad said she was in­formed Tues­day af­ter­noon that the party was tak­ing her off the bal­lot, cit­ing vi­o­la­tions of the party’s code of con­duct.

“I truly hope the Green party re­con­sid­ers for the sake of the mem­bers and democ­racy,” she said in a tweet.

The de­ci­sion comes just days be­fore elec­tronic vot­ing be­gins for the party to choose its next leader. Al­most 35,000 peo­ple are signed up to vote in the con­test, with the win­ner to be an­nounced in Ot­tawa Oct. 3. Elec­tronic vot­ing be­gins Sept. 26. Fewer than 300 mem­bers re­quested a mail-in bal­lot, leav­ing the rest to cast their vote elec­tron­i­cally.

Had­dad is the sec­ond Green can­di­date to be ex­pelled from the race. In June, Mon­treal en­vi­ron­men­tal ac­tivist Dy­lan Perce­val-maxwell was forced out af­ter he made a com­ment dur­ing a vir­tual de­bate that po­lice should have to pay $20 to ev­ery per­son of colour they stop, as com­pen­sa­tion for the trauma and as an in­cen­tive for po­lice to think twice about why they are stop­ping some­one. Had­dad was among those who com­plained about the com­ment, and in that de­bate called it “su­per racist.”

Nova Sco­tia vet­eran Judy Green with­drew her­self from the con­test in Au­gust and en­dorsed Bri­tish Columbia lawyer David Merner.

With­out Had­dad, seven peo­ple re­main in con­tention for the Green lead­er­ship.

Had­dad says she be­lieves the de­ci­sion to re­move her is mo­ti­vated by fear her cam­paign has been up­set­ting the “sta­tus quo.”

A party spokesper­son says there will be no fur­ther com­ment un­til af­ter Had­dad’s ap­peal is heard.

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