Bill 99 to be legally challenged

A legal challenge is already in the works against the Bouchard government's response to the federal Clarity Act.

Bill 99 asserts the right of Quebecers and the National Assembly to declare independence with a majority of 50 per cent plus one vote. It also says that Quebec cannot be divided further once the province becomes independent.

"Up to Ottawa to quash law"

The Equality Party is preparing to challenge the law in court.

Keith Henderson says Law 99 is illegal, unconstitutional, un-Canadian and probably seditious if the Bouchard government puts it into effect. He says the federal government should declare the law illegal.

"It's a law that is so clearly unconstitutional citizens shouldn't have to go to court to defend themselves against this law and spend years and years doing this, going up the court system when the federal government can intervene right away and strike this down," he says.

Henderson says that at a minimum the Chrtien government should refer the law directly to the Supreme Court of Canada. However, Henderson says that so far the the Justice Ministry is showing no signs that it will act.

Justice Ministry hands off

"'We're watching this carefully', they say. But, the concluding sentence of the letter I got from the Minister of Justice is that citizens are always free to make use of the courts," Henderson says.

Henderson says the Equality Party must take up a legal challenge.

"It says that the Assembly in Quebec City has the right to determine the legal and political future of the province all by itself. That's just a lie," he says.

Henderson says it's a dangerous lie because it allows Quebec's National Assembly to do what it wants without respecting the Canadian constitution.