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Leadership debate held for Green Party of Manitoba


A leadership debate was held Tuesday evening for the Green Party of Manitoba, as it looks for a new leader after James Beddome announced last year he wasn't seeking another term.

There are four candidates vying for the leadership spot and topics at the debate included leadership style, election strategy and policy priorities.

The candidates are Dennis Bayomi, Donovan McIntosh, Nicolas Geddert and Janine Gibson.

"We're really in a place where Manitobans are looking for change," said Bayomi.

"You always have to be going for the win," said McIntosh.

McIntosh said their parents instilled in them at an early age to fight for the environment. They said they are in favour of reducing animal-based agriculture.

"Before I knew what climate change was, I was already, I became a vegetarian. I was arguing against animal agriculture."

Gibson, a consultant in organic agriculture, lives off the grid on a farm south of Steinbach.

"All the power for this comes from the sun. We have backup wind generation here," she said.

Gibson is advocating for conserving resources and tackling homelessness, poverty and crime.

"Our soil and our water is under grave attack in rural Manitoba, as are our standards of living in the city."

Geddert ran previously in Elmwood and the 2022 Fort Whyte byelection. He is passionate about cleaning up Lake Winnipeg and attracting more youth to the party.

"I've coached basketball, run youth programs and I think that's where a lot of energy for political change comes from," said Geddert.

Bayomi ran in December's Kirkfield Park byelection and said health care, basic income and what he calls the climate emergency need urgent action.

"If we're not talking about that, it doesn't matter if we're talking about anything else. If we haven't got clean air, clean water, clean soil, we have nothing," he said.

Whoever the next leader is, they'll try to do something the party has failed at, winning a seat in the legislature.

However, the candidates have different views on when they want to win that first seat.

"You know, (when) starting your car in the winter, if you haven't started it for a while, let it warm up. You don't go to all out on the first run," said Geddert.

"You know I'm not really fixated on getting that first seat," said Bayomi.

"I'm not going to come to a voter's door and be like, 'I don't want to be your champion,'" said McIntosh.

Party members will be able to vote online and by mail between March 13 and 23. A new leader will be announced on March 26. Top Stories

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