Statement from Planet S on Colin Thatcher’s Throne Speech invitation | October 28, 2022
UPDATE: Planet S and Prairie Dog acknowledge Premier Scott Moe’s apology and the disciplinary action taken against Saskatchewan Party MLA Lyle Stewart, who was stripped of his legislative secretary position and (presumably) the $3,000 that came with it. That said, we stand with Saskatchewan citizens and residents who remain deeply concerned by multiple aspects of this incident. Why did it take nearly a week for Premier Moe to apologize? How is it possible the premier of a Canadian province with a population of more than a million people did not immediately recognize how offensive and inappropriate Colin Thatcher’s presence at the Throne Speech would be? How can Moe be so confused he needed to ask reporters “What would I apologize for?” Why is Stewart, an MLA who calls an unrepentant convicted murder his friend and a “fine individual”, still in the Saskatchewan Party caucus? How can Christine Tell be trusted as minister of Corrections, Policing, and Public Safety when she appears to not understand the basics of how parole works? These are questions Scott Moe’s government has not answered to the satisfaction of the people of this province.
Planet S and Prairie Dog stand with Saskatchewanians rightly outraged at the invitation of a convicted murderer to the government’s Wednesday, Oct. 26 Speech from the Throne.
Colin Thatcher is a former Progressive Conservative MLA and cabinet minister found guilty of first-degree murder in the brutal 1983 slaying of his ex-wife JoAnn Wilson. He has never admitted his guilt or shown remorse. Saskatchewan Party MLA Lyle Stewart has no business inviting this man to the provincial Legislature to sip tea and shake hands with elected officials.
Many, many Saskatchewan women experience intimate partner violence — in fact, this province has Canada’s worst domestic abuse rate. Wilson, a mother of three, was bludgeoned at least 27 times before she was shot in the head. The attack was so violent she suffered broken bones and even a severed finger. Welcoming the man convicted in her premeditated murder to the Throne Speech shows stunning ignorance of this social crisis and disgraceful callousness toward Saskatchewan victims.
The people of Saskatchewan are owed a meaningful apology from the Sask. Party’s Stewart. In addition to an apology, Stewart — who incredibly called Thatcher “a fine individual” — must resign his seat as the member for Lumsden–Morse. He has irretrievably lost the confidence of Saskatchewan citizens and residents.
As leader of the Sask. Party, Premier Scott Moe must also take responsibility for Stewart’s unacceptable behaviour. Moe must sincerely apologize to the people of this province and detail the steps he will take to educate himself and his caucus on this issue.
Reasonable adults can disagree on politics and public policy. Inviting unrepentant convicted killers to major legislative events, however, is something we must all unite to condemn.
Stephen Whitworth, Editor
Terry Morash, Publisher
Planet S, Saskatoon
Prairie Dog, Regina