I wanted to send an update regarding the Rally at the Portage Diversion Control Structure. It was a long day ‘in’ the Portage Diversion for those that attended the rally. Thank-you to everyone that supported the rally. The protest drew the attention of media across the province and more importantly Minister Ashton.
Late last night the group of protestors negotiated with RCMP mediators for a urgent meeting with Minister Ashton. They are also urging Premier Selinger to attend. As part of the negotiations, the protestors have left the Portage Diversion and have removed the farm equipment. The protestors were not charged and left the site peacefully.
Arrangements for the negotiated meeting were to be made this morning and it is expected that this meeting will take place this week. RCMP mediators indicated that the terms of negotiation would be upheld. News media has offered to be present at the meeting and record the proceedings.
Although Minister Ashton was able to portray the protestors as irresponsible, there was a significant amount of support from the media and the public. Is it irresponsible to put the people around Portage and Winnipeg in jeopardy but not irresponsible to continue to put people around Lake Manitoba in harms way? Food for thought.
Stay tuned for more information.