board announces election results
The Canadian Wheat Board announced the results of the first half
of its director elections Wednesday, just days after a court ruling
that criticized the board for leaving some producers off voters
The winning candidates announced Wednesday will represent the
board's five even-numbered districts.
Jim Chatenay of Red Deer, Alta., was acclaimed in District 2; Ken
Ritter of Kindersley was elected in District 4; Ian McCreary of
Bladworth will represent District 6; Rod Flaman from Edenwold was
chosen in District 8; and Bill Toews of Kane, Man., was elected in
"The voters and candidates have demonstrated tremendous
interest in the . . . elections over the past four months,"
said election co-ordinator Peter Eckersley in a news release.
"The people who know grain farming the best -- the producers
-- have had their voice heard and have elected the individuals whom
they believe will best represent their interests."
The vote was conducted using a mail-in preferential voting system
that allowed producers to rank candidates in their order of
Eckersley said the overall ballot response was 32.7 per cent.
There are a total of 15 directors on the wheat board -- 10
elected by farmers in Western Canada, and the other five appointed
by the federal government.
Last week board officials said they would improve the way the
elections are conducted after a computer glitch resulted in some
names being omitted from the voter list.
Art Mainil, a farmer who opposes the board's monopoly on wheat
and barley exports, sought a court injunction earlier this month
alleging election irregularities. A federal judge ruled against
Mainil's bid to delay the announcement of the results, but left the
door open for a judicial review of the board's election process.
Eckersley said two problems occurred during the election -- about
200 producers were assigned to vote in a wrong district, and 792
producers were left off the original voters list -- but both
problems were solved before the votes were counted.