The Saskatoon Wildlife Federation wants nothing to do with a proposed shooting contest between two local People’s Party of Canada candidates, and says it won’t allow the event to take place at its new range east of the city .
Announced this weekend, the “rifle range skill battle” is aimed at determining which candidate will represent Maxime Bernier’s new political party in an election debate hosted by the Greater of Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce.
Mark Friesen and Guto Panteado were supposed to take part in the contest Tuesday afternoon, but SWF President Robert Freberg said that it won’t be happening at the only large-bore rifle range within an hour’s drive of the city.
In an interview, Freberg said neither Friesen nor Panteado are currently SWF members, and the organization’s executive was not consulted on the proposed shooting match until early Tuesday morning.
Moreover, Freberg said, the People’s Party’s plan to livestream the event on social media would contravene the SWF’s “absolute prohibition” on photography at the range, which is intended to protect its members’ privacy.
“This is not the way our federation wants to be seen by the public,” Freberg said, adding that while the SWF supports gun rights, it is non-partisan and must work with whatever political party forms government in October.
Referring to a recent CBC News story in which Panteado described himself as a “redneck,” Freberg said that does not align with the SWF’s mandate, which includes bringing people together to celebrate hunting and fishing.
That includes a major education effort, as well as partnerships with local Indigenous organizations, he said.
More to come .
Copyright Postmedia Network Inc., 2019