April 11, 2012
Wherever one stands on the current teachers’ dispute, it must be recognized that it is crucial for all sides that the mediator appointed should be considered by all parties to be independent and impartial at the outset.
Unfortunately for upcoming negotiations – already a potential minefield – there are serious flaws in the optics of the B.C. government’s appointment of Charles Jago as mediator, at an estimated cost to taxpayers of $2,000 per day .
A former president of the University of Northern B.C. and author of a 2006 report on education in the province, Jago has been faulted by the BC Teachers Federation as a former contributor to the BC Liberals’ war chest – to the tune of $500 in 2007 and the same again in 2010.
Jago has explained the amounts represent tickets purchased for fundraising golf tournaments, as though that somehow made them less significant than straight contributions to the BC Liberal cause. But contributions – and generous ones – they were.
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