August 20, 2021
Treaty 1 Territory, Homeland of the Métis Nation, Winnipeg MB— The Manitoba NDP Critic for Education Nello Altomare is calling on the Minister of Education Cliff Cullen to resign after he was captured on video applauding behind PC leadership candidate Heather Stefanson on Wednesday as she pledged to stop Bill 64.
“Manitobans deserve to know where their Education Minister stands on Bill 64” said Altomare. “Until Wednesday, Pallister’s Education Minister, Cliff Cullen, had championed Bill 64 every step of the way despite the vocal majority of Manitobans who oppose it. If he is suddenly opposed to his own Bill then he needs to step down. It’s a principle of our system of Government that if a minister cannot support government legislation, especially legislation he introduced under his own name, they should step down.”
On Wednesday, Cullen endorsed PC leadership hopeful Heather Stefanson who said if she were to become Premier Bill 64 is “done”. Cullen refused to speak with media afterwards to explain his flip-flop. It is a longstanding principle of our democracy and ministerial accountability that Ministers who cannot defend their own government’s legislation should either quit cabinet or be fired.
“The vocal majority of Manitobans have spoken – they reject the bill,” said Altomare. “If Minister Cullen is sincere in his opposition to Bill 64 then he should be honest and resign from Mr. Pallister’s cabinet immediately,” said Altomare.