Alistair MacGregor said he’s not surprised by the quick victory of Jagmeet Singh on Oct. 1 in the contest to win the leadership of the federal NDP.
MacGregor, MP for Cowichan-Malahat-Langford, threw his support behind the young 38-year-old Sikh from Ontario in the leadership race earlier this summer.
He said Singh has surrounded himself with an inspired and motivated group of organizers and supporters who were instrumental in getting the new leader’s message to delegates and to Canadians in general.
“This is history making in that not only is Jagmeet the first non-white leader of a major federal party, but also for the fact that he is young and his leadership of the NDP will attract more young people to politics and political issues,” McGregor said.
“His win in just one ballot also speaks well for the spirit of unity that exists within the party.”
Singh, the former deputy leader of the Ontario NDP, secured victory on Sunday over his three rivals by taking more than half the votes on the first ballot in the race to lead the NDP party.
Singh won with 53.6 per cent support — more than 35,000 of the 65,782 party members who voted.
Though an MPP in Ontario for the last six years, Singh is a newcomer to Ottawa.
MacGregor said Singh is not expected to run for a federal seat until 2019, and intends to criss-cross the country until then building up the party’s grass roots support.
“He will also have a busy month ahead as he puts together a team to carry out his vision for the party,” MacGregor said.
“He will have to learn on the fly as he puts that team in place. He will be having conversations with NDP MPs in the coming weeks on what roles they will play, and I look forward to my conversation with him. There’s lots of work to be done and Jagmeet won’t have much time to bask in the glory of his win on Sunday.”