B.C. NDP elects Craig Keating as new party president
North Vancouver city councillor succeeds Moe Sihota
British Columbia's New Democrats have elected Craig Keating as their new party president.
The five-term North Vancouver city councillor succeeds Moe Sihota, a former provincial cabinet minister, who held the post for four years.
Keating beat out former Surrey MLA Jagrup Brar for the position.
The B.C. NDP made their choice at the party's convention in Vancouver Sunday.
Keating said he was honoured to get the job but admitted many challenges lay ahead in the wake of last May's surprising and devastating election defeat to the B.C. Liberals.
"I think everybody in the province knows we've got a big job to rebuild the party," Keating said.
"But I was extremely enthused by the fact that we had 1,000 delegates who stayed almost to the very end, every one of them, determined to rebuild the party again."
Keating said key priorities include modernizing the party database, reinvigorating British Columbians to get engaged in the political process, and ensuring that the B.C. Liberals are held to account.
He also said he will continue to serve as a city councillor in North Vancouver for the time being.
On Saturday, B.C. NDP leader Adrian Dix described this as a tough time for the NDP, and said one of the biggest challenges facing the party is overcoming cynicism.
He also vowed a new leader can and will win the next provincial election.
The party is expected to discuss a date for a leadership election, but no decision will be announced today.