British Columbia

Doug McCallum says Surrey YouTube video not from his mayoral campaign

Anonymous YouTube post claims the real Surrey includes homeless camps and dealers

Surrey controversial ad

Mayoral candidate Doug McCallum says he has nothing to do with a controversial campaign-style ad that paints Surrey in an unflattering light (Safe Surrey/youtube)

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Surrey mayoral candidate Doug McCallum's campaign staff say he has nothing to do with a campaign-style video that portrays the Metro Vancouver city in a very unflattering light.

The video is narrated by a man with an American accent, and opens with shots of idyllic neighbourhoods.

"Other candidates want you to believe this is the Surrey we live in," the narrator says.

But then it switches tone abruptly.

"This is the real Surrey," the voice continues, over top of images of shopping carts covered in tarps, piles of refuse and a homeless camp.

"Surrey is rife with neighbourhoods where no God-fearing man would dare step," it continues as gunshots and screams ring out in the background.

The narrator then says "we need someone to step up, someone who has been there before," as a picture of Doug McCallum and his political slate appears.

McCallum's campaign spokesman Jonathan Ross calls the video "unfortunate" and says the person or people behind the video and the twitter account @safesurrey, have nothing to do with McCallum's political slate — Safe Surrey Coalition.

"This individual, whoever that might be, doesn't have anything to do with the Safe Surrey Coalition, but has spent the past couple of months doing their best to try and portray that," Ross said.

"We are clueless as to who is behind it, what their motivations are, if they are associated with another campaign or not."

Whoever is behind the twitter account has been much more successful than McCallum's real campaign in attracting twitter followers, outnumbering the official @safe_surrey account by 14 to one.

But to be fair, Ross notes the @safesurrey account predates his campaign's official account by two years.

Ross says McCallum's campaign has launched an official complaint with Twitter to have the account removed, but he insists it should not be a factor in next month's election.

"We are not overly concerned about it," he said.

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