Comment Of The Week: How Non-Partisan Is The Chamber Of Commerce?

In light of its stated position that it is sponsoring “non-partisan” All Candidates Meetings the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce should perhaps take care to be a little less partisan in its support for BC Liberal incumbent Mike de Jong.

In particular the provision of a direct “Tell a friend about M.L.A. Michael DeJong” link on the Chamber website has provoked at least one resident to question the Chamber’s impartiality.

This comment was received on the story – Provincial All Candidates Meetings Announced from DeceitinDrugs on March 24, 2013 at 11:07 pm.

The words, “non partisan” All Candidates meetings sponsored
by Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce, Fraser valley Real Estate
Board and Indo-Cdn. Business Association caught my attention.

Definition of “non-partisan” in the Merrian-Webster dictionary
states: not influenced by, free from party affiliation and in the
Oxford Dictionary: poltically neutral, detached and unbiased.

I find it interesting, past, Chamber of Commerce director,
Dave Holmberg has been campaign organizer for Michael DeJong,
Liberal M.L.A.,Abbotsford West candidate , dating back to 1993 and Abbotsford
Chamber of Commerce, President, Allan Asaph,recently “offered
levity at Holmberg’s retirement party.

This tells me, there is a definite association between the past and present,
Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce, Executive and Liberal
Candidate, Michael DeJong, Abbotsford West.

The Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce website has a direct link to their
website titled, “Tell a friend about M.L.A. Michael DeJong.”

In addition, Jatinder Sidhu, president of the Indo-Cdn. business
Association has, also, been on the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce,
Executive along with director,Bharathi Sandu.

Jatinder Sidhu, furthermore, collected 10,000+ South Asian member
signatures for Michael DeJong prior to the 2011 election.
2011 Election.

There are, also, many Chamber of Commerce, past and present Executive
members, who are active Liberal supporters and donated to Michael
DeJong’s 2011 campaign.

Lastly, the person, who has moderated the All Candidates meetings
in past years, has, also, been a Abbotsford Chamber, director and
donated to Michael DeJong, 2011 election.

the above information tends to indicate that the All Candidates
meeting sponsored by the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce and
Abbotsford Indo Canadian Business Association are influenced
by and are not free of party affiliation with the Liberals and
thus, I question their ability to hold a “politically neutral,
detached and unbiased” All Candidates meeting.

Join the discussion 2 Comments

  • Sandra Jenkins says:

    Pretty funny. The Chamber can be non-partisan. Are you saying the individual members are not allowed to have personal politicial affiliations? They’re restricted? Did you happen to check in on which of them contributes to other political parties? Check into who else spoke at Dave Holmberg’s retirement party? Like Brian Lee, Gerri Charles…it was a fund raiser for Abbotsford Hospice Society for Holmberg House, a hospice house, named after Dave’s son whom he lost to cancer. Mr. Holmberg has been a staunch community supporter of things like Discovery trail, many charities, and especially the hospice. Many people in this community think very highly of Dave Holmberg. That doesn’t mean they’re liberal supporters. As for the link to Mr. De Jong’s website, notice that it’s the Chamber directory? Any one who is a Chamber member can be on there. You’ll notice that also in the directory is John Van Dongen. You are so obviously not into all the facts. Now I expect that because I pointed all this out, you and your buddies will start taking shots at me.

  • Raj Thind says:

    Our (SBOT)Surrey Chamber of Commerce Director Ms. Anita, also claims to be Non-Partisan, while working for Municipal and Provincial Politicians. Their Non Partisan status should be revoked by CRA.

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