The grand chief of Manitoba's Southern Chiefs Organization has refused to accept the apology of an MLA who made what he considers a racist remark in the legislature.

Leanne Rowat, the Conservative MLA for Minnedosa and aboriginal affairs critic, called out "wine and beer" when a cabinet minister used the word "sustenance" in a debate about aboriginal fishing in the house last Thursday.

Rowat apologized for the remark Wednesday in the legislature.

"The context of the statement made last Thursday was made not to be malicious, it was made in jest to the Spirited Energy campaign,"she said.

"If I offended anybody based on the comments that were made, I apologize for that."  

But Grand Chief Morris Shannacappo is not satisfied with the apology, saying MLAs must be responsible for the words they say.

"What do we do next?  Well, I'm still going to continue to ask for her resignation, and if [Tory Leader Hugh] McFadyen doesn't want to apologize, then I will still hammer on the issue," he said.

McFadyen said earlier this week that no apology was necessary, as the remark was part of a running commentary dating back to debate for the NDP's Spirited Energy rebranding campaign. 

Rowat had last year questioned Jim Rondeau, the minister in charge of the campaign, about receipts for beer and wine served at a planning function. Rondeau had, in response, described the beverages as "sustenance." Rowat's "beer and wine" remark last week was in reference to that, McFadyen said.

Shannacappo insists the leader should also apologize.

"I honestly believe that the apology should also come from the leader. He has to be accountable for the words that are spoken by his ministers."  

Shannacappo said some people have suggested that a protest be carried out in front of Rowat's constituency office. Rowat has offices in the towns of Souris and Minnedosa.