B.C. Liberal MLAs have chosen Prince George-Valemount MLA Shirley Bond to lead the party after Andrew Wilkinson’s decision to step aside before the next sitting of the B.C. legislature.
Bond is a former deputy premier and veteran of multiple cabinet posts in the previous government, once known as “the general” for directing the solicitor general and attorney general ministries at the same time. She will lead the 28-member B.C. Liberal caucus in its post-election return to the B.C. legislature, set to start Dec. 7.
Congratulations @shirleybond on becoming interim leader of the BC Liberals. As an MLA since 2001, she has an incredible amount of experience. Looking forward to working with her in her role as leader of the opposition to support British Columbians through the pandemic and beyond.
— John Horgan (@jjhorgan) November 23, 2020
Bond was selected at a B.C. Liberal caucus meeting Nov. 23, the first since Premier John Horgan and the NDP were confirmed by final count as forming their largest majority ever, with 57 of the 87 seats in the B.C. legislature. Surrey South MLA Stephanie Cadieux was chosen as B.C. Liberal caucus chair.
Former leader Andrew Wilkinson announced on the weekend he would step aside to make way for an interim leader, after that was determined by the party executive in the wake of the election.
“In the coming days, I’ll be meeting with caucus members, appointing a leadership team, and assigning MLA critic portfolios,” Bond said in a statement. B.C. Liberal MLAs are to be sworn in Friday, Nov. 27, after Horgan unveils his new cabinet lineup Nov. 26.
The party has previously announced that it would conduct a thorough review of policy and the election platform, which was assembled hastily as Horgan called a surprise election for October, a year before his minority government agreement with the B.C. Green Party was to expire.