Mar 17, 2023

By Jane Brown

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Andrea Horwath’s former riding is staying NDP.

Thursday’s provincial byelection in Hamilton Centre has gone to the New Democrat, Sarah Jama.

The 28 year old founder of the Disability Justice Network is a frequent speaker on policing and Palestinian rights with public anti-Israel views.

Ahead of Thursday’s vote, Sarah Jama apologized for her “harmful remarks” made at a Palestinian rally in 2021 when she said Isreal is funding the killing of people here locally and globally.

She did not address the controversy in her victory statement on Thursday night.

“Not only did we show that people who don’t normally fit into political processes, could be political, could take up seats at Queen’s Park, we also showed that we can do this with resounding power,” Jama told supporters.

With nearly all of the polls reporting, Jama garnered 54 percent of the vote, beating the Liberal, Progressive Conservative and Green party candidates, along with six others.

Earlier in the day, Michael Levitt with the Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Centre told Zoomer Radio’s Fight Back with Libby Znaimer, he met with NDP Leader Marit Stiles this week to express concerns over Sarah Jama.

“It was a difficult, a direct, but respectful conversation that we had,” Levitt revealed, “And I really made clear and I think Hamilton Federation issued a statement yesterday (Wednesday), and if I can quote them, what has surfaced has caused a lot of pain to the Jewish community. The impact must be acknowledged and addressed.”

The riding of Hamilton Centre was held by former NDP Leader Andrea Horvath for 15 years before she resigned and later became mayor of Hamilton last October.

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