Paul Manly, filmmaker and social activist, announced he hopes to be the Green Party of Canada’s first Nanaimo-Ladysmith riding candidate in the next federal election.
During a public announcement at Mon Petit Choux in downtown Nanaimo on Monday, Manly, 50, laid out his priorities if elected, which include reforming Canada’s electoral system and changing the federal government’s stance on climate change.
Manly, son of former NDP MP Jim Manly, came to the Green Party after the federal NDP executive prevented him and 23 other potential candidates from running in the 2015 federal election.
In the summer, the Green Party hired Manly to document a cross-Canada trip on the Green Train to Fredericton, N.B., for the party’s 2014 convention.
“I met Green representatives from across the country, I read Vision Green and I was amazed at the depth of the policy that the Green Party has and the vision for the future, so I think the NDP did me a favour in waking me up to what the Green Party had to offer,” Manly said.
Manly said he is less concerned about vote splitting among Green, NDP and Liberals in the region and more focused on voter apathy and wants to draw votes from people who didn’t vote in the last election. He also wants to attract young voters, plus voters who have become disenchanted with other parties, including progressive-thinking conservatives. Manly also said he would be willing to form a coalition with other parties.
“The way things happen progressively in communities, in the country, is when we get a minority government,” Manly said. “That’s when you get compromise between political parties. There are things we need to do in this country, like changing our voting system to proportional representation and deal with climate change.”
Manly described Canada as a “pariah state” for its unwillingness to enter into a binding international agreement to help avert global warming.
Several people in the audience, including Coun. Gord Fuller and Jeff Solomon, Nanaimo school board trustee, openly pledged their support for Manly at the announcement.
The Green Party nomination meeting happens at Beban Park Social Centre, Monday (Jan. 12) at 7 p.m.