WINNIPEG — Five Manitoba cabinet ministers who locked horns with Premier Greg Selinger last week have resigned.
Finance Minister Jennifer Howard, Justice Minister Andrew Swan, Municipal Government Minister Stan Struthers, Jobs and Economy Minister Theresa Oswald and Health Minister Erin Selby released a joint statement on Monday morning.
The five rebel ministers spoke out openly against Selinger over his ability to lead the NDP, encouraging him to step aside as leader.
Selinger addressed the concerns last Tuesday, vowing to remain in his position and carry the party to the next provincial election in 2016.
“For some time, it has been increasingly difficult to do our jobs because the premier has stopped listening to our advice,” Howard said in a statement. “This has been the case since we privately discussed, at his invitation, our concerns about his leadership.”
“We will continue to serve as MLAs and to work for our constituents. We will continue to be New Democrats, because that is the party whose values we share.”
Greg Selinger’s statement on the matter:
Last week I had direct conversations with members of my team who have chosen another path. In those conversations I made it clear: either focus on the priorities of Manitoba families as a part of our team, or resign. I am saddened by the decisions they’ve made. I wish to thank each for their contributions toward building a better province.
In 2011, Manitobans elected a dedicated, diverse and experienced group of New Democrat MLAs, representative of every region of our province, with experience in a wide variety of fields.
I will appoint a new cabinet from this talented team. Our government will remain focused on the priorities of all Manitobans- creating jobs and opportunities, investing in infrastructure and protecting services. The new cabinet will be sworn in today.
It’s unclear who will fill the positions left by the “rebel five,” as they’re being called. It’s also not known whether a fall sitting of the legislature will occur.