A crowd at Maffeo Sutton Park shows its support Sunday afternoon at a Green Party rally. The rally capped off the B.C. Green Party's conference in Nanaimo.

A crowd at Maffeo Sutton Park shows its support Sunday afternoon at a Green Party rally. The rally capped off the B.C. Green Party's conference in Nanaimo.

Green Party rallies in Nanaimo

NANAIMO – The B.C. Green Party held its conference, called Strategically Green, and its annual general meeting on Saturday at the VICC.

Green-minded voters got together to talk strategy and try to generate enthusiasm.

The B.C. Green Party held its conference, called Strategically Green, and its annual general meeting on Saturday at the Vancouver Island Conference Centre. A rally at Maffeo Sutton Park followed on Sunday.

Elizabeth May, leader of the federal Green Party, was in town for the weekend; though the federal and provincial Green parties are not affiliated, she is a member of the B.C. Greens and had a vested interest.

“I thought it was great,” said May. “A lot of energy, a lot of people, a lot of professionalism to how we approach making decisions as Greens.”

Adam Olsen, interim leader of the B.C. Greens, put forward a motion for a leadership vote at the next AGM in 2016.

“The last year has been an unprecedented period of growth and maturation for the B.C. Green Party,” Olsen said in a press release. “We’re ready to elect a new permanent leader, and I couldn’t be more excited for this leadership convention.

Andrew Weaver, MLA for Oak Bay-Gordon Head and deputy leader of the B.C. Greens, said at Sunday’s rally that his party is principled, honest and trustworthy.

“They are qualities that are true to our heart and the reason why there’s a wave spreading across British Columbia,” he said.

May fired up the crowd at the park with criticisms of “Stephen Harper’s serial acts of vandalism as prime minister.” She said the Conservative government is ignoring a long-standing federal-provincial moratorium on supertankers and lamented “rip and strip resource extraction and export.”

May said even months away from the federal election, it’s important to rally support because she said the Green Party is competitive in every single riding on Vancouver Island.

“We need to make sure that we’re spreading the good news that this is fun so that people will sign up and volunteer,” May said. “It’s a rally to generate the energy and the enthusiasm and the fun that carries us forward.”

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