Mayoral candidate Ralph Forsyth set the record straight on Thursday about his campaign's involvement in the challenges to four candidates' nomination papers.
Nancy-Wilhelm Morden, Jack Crompton, Steve Andrews and Steve Anderson will all appear in court on Friday, Oct. 21 to plead their case after irregularities were reported with their paperwork.
According to Forsyth, neither he nor anyone in his campaign team challenged any of the nomination papers.
What his campaign team did do was send an email to the Chief Electoral Officers asking him whether all the candidates' nomination papers were in order, which Forsyth isaid s a common practice for campaigns.
"I want to be 100 per cent, absolutely clear," he told Pique , "the challenge did not come from me. The challenge comes from the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO), and that is a fact.
"The rumour is that several emails were sent (to the CEO regarding the nomination papers) and my guess is that there were probably people who sent emails asking if my papers were in order.
"There's a book out there called 'How to Win a Local Election,' and on your to-do list as a candidate is reviewing the nomination papers and contacting the CEO to ask them if everyone's papers are in order."
Forsyth said he wants to win the election honestly and wasn't using dirty tricks to get ahead or make other candidates look bad.
"Everyone's smearing me on Facebook, and it's so disappointing to accuse me of doing something wrong. Somehow I'm the bad guy, but the truth is that there wouldn't be a problem with people's papers if there wasn't a problem with their papers.
"My understanding is that there were several emails. People have a right to question the papers. That's why they have to be posted out front at city hall, and because it's absolutely a government document like your passport you have to fill it out correctly. You don't get your passport if you put your wrong birthplace or birthdate on it. People look at your papers."
Forsyth said he was also affected by the electoral officer's challenge.
"I feel awful for Jack (Crompton), because I'm supporting Jack and he's supporting me. Why would I want to eliminate a supporter? I want to beat the other five candidates (for mayor) because I beat them.
"If people want to characterize me as a bad person for doing nothing wrong, then they can go ahead and do that. But that's not the campaign I'm running. I haven't slagged anyone, I've only presented the facts and I've been open and transparent about every single thing in my campaign. People who know me know I'm an honest person."
The candidates' papers were challenged for different reasons. Three of the candidates used former Whistler mayor Drew Meredith as nominators, and on two of those forms - Wilhelm-Morden and Crompton - Meredith listed his Pemberton address rather than his Whistler residence. On one form, Anderson's, he listed his Whistler address, but didn't include his primary residence in Pemberton. Steve Andrews' form was challenged because one of his nominators wrote their address in the wrong column and because the second nominator's name was scratched out and replaced with another name.
All of the candidates were told their paperwork was in order, and had no warning that their nomination forms were being challenged until Tuesday, Oct. 18, which was the last day to challenge nominations. The forms were due on Oct. 14, but some candidates filed as early as Oct. 5.