Darryl Plecas BC Liberal
John van Dongen Independent
Lakhvinder Jhaj BC NDP
Steve Finlay Marijuana
Patricia Smith BC Excalibur
At a glance
Former BC Liberal John van Dongen won the Abbotsford South seat in 2009 with 58 per cent of the vote, but in March 2012 he abruptly quit the party and joined the BC Conservatives. He then quit that party and became an independent candidate a few months later.
"I will work with anyone who wants to bring their resources and their capacity and their work ethic to the table to build a credible option for British Columbians," he told Bill Tieleman in Sept. 2012, adding that he would continue digging up information on the BC Rail case -- one reason he left the governing party.
Following the Liberals' nomination of criminologist Darryl Plecas as their candidate for the district, several members of the board of the Abbotsford South riding association resigned in protest.
Other candidates this election include van Dongen as an independent, and BC NDP candidate Lakhvinder Jhaj, who ran for the Boundary Similkameen seat in 2009.
Steve Finlay is a candidate for the BC Marijuana Party, and Patricia Smith is a candidate for the BC Excalibur Party, a party that champions Arthurian values.
The Tyee has identified Abbotsford South as one to watch this May. As reporter Doug Ward describes: "Incumbent MLA John van Dongen's candidacy as an independent candidate makes this an intriguing three-way race. The mercurial van Dongen quit the BC Liberal caucus last year after 15 years and then joined the Conservatives, which he abandoned months later. The BC Liberal machine nominated criminologist Darryl Plecas after preventing city councillor Moe Gill from running. The controversy in the South Asian community over the nomination could hurt Plecas in his battle with van Dongen and NDP candidate Lukhvinder Jhaj."
The district was created in 2008, and includes parts of the old districts of Abbotsford-Clayburn, Abbotsford-Mount Lehman and Chilliwack-Sumas.
Did you know?
Why did members of the BC Liberal riding association in Abbotsford South resign in November? As Vancouver Sun columnist Vaughn Palmer revealed, the nomination of Darryl Plecas irritated association members, who largely favoured candidate hopeful Moe Gill. Gill supporters had seized control of the riding association after van Dongen left the party, but BC Liberal brass ultimately chose Plecas as the candidate. Gill has since announced his intention to run as an independent in Abbotsford West.
Previous Election Results
|Candidate||Votes||%||John van Dongen BC Liberal||9566||58.5%||Bonnie Jasiver Rai BC NDP||4197||25.7%||Daniel Stephen Bryce BC Green||1244||7.6%||Gurcharan Dhaliwal BC Conservative||1019||6.2%|
Telling Stats about Abbotsford South
|Statistic||Riding percentage||B.C. average|
|Percent seniors, 2011||15%||15.8%|
|Percent families with kids 24 and under, 2011||54%||47.7%|
|Percent residents with non-English mother tongue, 2011||28%||26.4%|
|Top three non-English languages spoken at home, 2006||Panjabi (Punjabi): 10.8%, German: 6.5%, Dutch: 1.4%||n/a|
|Average household income (before tax), 2006||$61,903||$67,675|
|Owners vs. renters, 2006||66/34||70/30|