Shane Woodford | Email news tips to firstname.lastname@example.org
Provincial and federal New Democrats tried to get into the Northern Gateway review panel hearings as they resumed in Victoria today, but were refused.
B.C.’s environment minister, however, says it’s just political games.
Terry Lake says the NDP has already said it opposes the Enbridge pipeline.
“I think it is clear that the NDP don't have any respect for the process at all, so I am not sure why they even are trying to attend the meetings."
Lake says the province did not attend either – not until the hearings resume in Prince Rupert for cross-examinations.
He says that is where the province will use its intervenor status to grill Enbridge executives on oil spill preventation and clean up.
The NDP members, as well as about 150 protesters, were told to watch the hearings via TV feed from a second location – a hotel several kilometers away.
Murray Rankin, the New Democrat MP for Victoria, was outright asked to leave the proceedings – which he says he simply wanted to observe.
"I am the Member of Parliament. I represent this constituency. This is a federal hearing, I am the federal member. I would like to go into this room and observe for my constituents whether this is being done, in my judgment, fairly. And they said, “I am sorry, sir, you must go to the other venue.’”
He accuses the federal government of having already made up its mind to allow the pipeline, as both the prime minister and the natural resource minister have publically backed the proposal.