“Advocate for ingenuity’: Payette praised as choice for next Governor General”Advocate for ingenuity’: Payette praised as choice for next Governor General

Payette widely praised as future GG

OTTAWA — The choice of former astronaut Julie Payette as Canada’s next Governor General received widespread praise Thursday, even from those who had hoped an Indigenous person might be tapped to fill the post.

But she will be held to a high standard when it comes to the relationship between Indigenous Peoples and the Crown she now represents, said Assembly of First Nations National Chief Perry Bellegarde.

“There are some who were calling for an Indigenous Governor General and, while we may see that in our lifetime, we know that whoever assumes this position has a duty to uphold the honour of the Crown in all their work, and that includes the long-standing relationship with First Nations,” Bellegarde said in a statement.

Bellegarde was among many though who said Payette’s lengthy resume, which includes two trips into space, will serve her and Canada well.

“As a scientist, a former chief astronaut for the (Canadian Space Agency), and a leading advocate for Canadian ingenuity around the world, Ms. Payette will be well-suited to play a leadership role in Canada as the next Governor General,” said Opposition Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer, adding that his party has full confidence in her.

NDP Leader Tom Mulcair also welcomed the choice, recalling a chance encounter he had with her earlier this year as she was volunteering at Mont-Tremblant in Quebec as a member of the ski patrol.

Mulcair said he sympathized, however, with those who might be disappointed an Indigenous person wasn’t selected.

“I also look forward to the near future when, as a step on our path to reconciliation, Canada will be honoured with an Indigenous Governor General,” he said.

The Liberal party’s Indigenous MPs, who had been calling for an Aboriginal person to fill the job, nevertheless also welcomed her appointment.

“There would have been a lot of pressure placed on that person to make changes in the system and unfortunately the role of the Governor General, as we all know, is a symbolic role,” said Robert-Falcon Ouellette, a member of the Indigenous caucus.

Payette will become the 29th person to hold the position, and the fourth female to be the monarch’s representative in Canada.

The man she is replacing, Gov. Gen. David Johnston, was effusive in his praise for his replacement, having met her on several occasions.

“Ms. Payette is one of Canada’s most remarkable and accomplished citizens, and her appointment to the position of Governor General of Canada is wonderful news for our country,” he said in a statement from Beijing, where he is currently on an official visit.

“It’s a function I’ve been so privileged to hold for the past seven years, and I am certain that she will fulfil this role with intelligence, grace and energy, and that she will bring qualities of curiosity, courage and compassion to her mandate.”

The Canadian Press

Just Posted

BREAKING: Red Deer to host Canadian Finals Rodeo in 2018

The CFR is expected to bring $20-30 million annually to Red Deer and region

The cost of flushing sanitary wipes is brought to Red Deer city council

More public education is needed about what not to flush down toilets

Veterans’ Park barrier key to pedestrian safety, says Red Deer traffic engineer

The recently roughed-up concrete barrier in front of Veterans’ Park has seen… Continue reading

Man accused of home invasion in court

Victim was shot and cut with machete in September 2017 attack

WATCH: Rebels play floor hockey with Annie L. Gaetz students

The Rebels may be on a losing streak but they were definitely… Continue reading

Ice dancers Virtue and Moir to carry flag at Pyeongchang Olympics

Not since Kurt Browning at the 1994 Lillehammer Games has a figure… Continue reading

Beer Canada calls on feds to axe increasing beer tax as consumption trends down

OTTAWA — A trade association for Canada’s beer industry wants the federal… Continue reading

Central Albertans recall Hawaii’s false missile alert

Former Red Deer councillor Paul Harris was hanging out at the Ka’anapali… Continue reading

This robotic maid takes us one step closer to ‘The Jetsons’

Imagine this: You’re rushing to get ready for work — juggling emails,… Continue reading

Milan line offers canine couture for pampered pooches

Milan has long been the world’s ready-to-wear fashion leader. Now, dogs are… Continue reading

Kim Kardashian West and husband Kanye welcome baby girl

NEW YORK — It’s a girl for Kim Kardashian West and her… Continue reading

Advocate poll takers oppose plastic bag ban

Red Deer Advocate readers like their plastic bags. In an Advocate poll,… Continue reading

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month