The Progressive Conservative Party of Manitoba wants the Court of Queen's Bench to hear Shelly Glover's case alleging irregularities in the Oct. 30 leadership election of Heather Stefanson so the matter can be addressed once and for all.

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This article was published 15/11/2021 (193 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

The Progressive Conservative Party of Manitoba wants the Court of Queen's Bench to hear Shelly Glover's case alleging irregularities in the Oct. 30 leadership election of Heather Stefanson so the matter can be addressed once and for all.

Stefanson, meanwhile, has filed a formal motion with the Court of Queen's Bench asking to be an intervener in the case, which would make her the first Manitoba premier in recent memory to go before the court.

"Stefanson has a clear and direct interest in the subject matter of these proceedings and has the ability to provide a unique contribution to the proceedings not offered by Glover or the PC Party," the motion filed on her behalf Monday stated, arguing the premier's participation is necessary "to ensure the just, efficient, and complete determination of the matters at issue herein."

The PC party is asking the court to deal with the matter by Dec. 20, and noted that all the parties involved "have recognized the importance of an expeditious resolution." The party is not challenging whether or not the court has jurisdiction to hear the case as it did initially — it wants the matter heard and settled.

"This is because in this unique situation, no matter the result of an internal appeals process, there remains the potential for either candidate to later complain (perhaps in another court process), that the result of the internal appeal process was not the product of an independent, fair and unbiased process," the brief stated.

On the same day that Stefanson, the declared winner of the party's leadership election, was sworn in as premier on Nov. 2, Glover filed a court application asking that the results be deemed invalid and for a new vote to be held. In a sworn affidavit, Glover said her campaign was presented with a spreadsheet at 12:27 a.m. on the day of the vote that showed the total number of ballots to be counted was 16,045.

Later that day, the party announced Stefanson was the winner and premier-designate after receiving 8,405 votes, compared to 8,042 for Glover. The total number of ballots cast, it said, was 16,456 — 501 more than allegedly reported on the spreadsheet, and at the heart of her allegation of irregularities. The PC party in its 100-page court filing Monday said that it wants to put any questions to rest.

"While the PC Party has confidence that no such grounds would exist, unfounded allegations and drawn-out proceeding would be detrimental for the PC Party to carry out its role and to the long-term reputation of the PC Party."

The party is also asking that George Orle, the chairman of the party's leadership election committee, be named as a respondent in the case rather than just the PC Party of Manitoba.

A schedule for filing documents with the court has been determined, said Glover's lawyer Dave Hill. The matter goes before Justice Jim Edmond on Friday, who will decide whether or not the Court of Queen's Bench has jurisdiction to hear the case.

carol.sanders@freepress.mb.ca

Carol Sanders

Carol Sanders
Legislature reporter

After 20 years of reporting on the growing diversity of people calling Manitoba home, Carol moved to the legislature bureau in early 2020.