Nathan Cullen, former longtime NDP MP for the Skeena - Bulkley Valley riding, is seen here in a video released Sept. 17 announcing his intention to seek the provincial NDP nomination for the Stikine riding. (Twitter video screenshot)

Cullen announces bid for provincial NDP nomination for Stikine riding

Current MLA Donaldson not seeking re-election

Nathan Cullen has announced his intention to become the BC NDP’s candidate in the provincial Stikine riding.

Cullen is a well-known politician in the area, having served as NDP MP of the federal Bulkley — Skeena riding, which covers much of the same area as the provincial Stikine riding, from 2004 to 2019.

In a short video accompanying Cullen’s announcement on Twitter, Cullen said he is getting back into politics because 2020 has been a difficult year.

“I think we have a responsibility to work together to get us through this, get us through the next phase,” he said in the video. “I’ve been watching the NDP government take us competently, compassionately through this difficult time, and I want to help take us through the next phase.”

The current MLA for Stikine, the NDP’s Doug Donaldson, announced Sept. 14 that he will not seek re-election.

“After 22 years in public life, it’s time to get back to the balance of spending more time on the land with family and friends, both in the backcountry and at home on Gitxsan territory,” Donaldson said in a statement.

Read more: MLA Doug Donaldson announces he won’t be seeking re-election

Officially, the next provincial election is scheduled for Oct. 16, 2021, but rumours of a snap election this fall are flying after the B.C. Green Party, with whom the minority NDP government has a power-sharing agreement, elected a new leader.

B.C. Premier John Horgan has thus far denied election rumours.

More to come.

– with files from Ashley Wadhwani and Katya Slepian

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