Former Sask. Prime Minister Brad Wall gave strategic advice to key convoy organizer


Former Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall was in contact with a key organizer of the protest against the Freedom Convoy mandate, providing strategic advice before and after the occupation of Ottawa began.

“Your group is likely to be provoked by counter-protesters and it’s very important that you don’t take the bait,” Wall said in a text message to Saskatchewan trucker Chris Barber on Feb. 2, according to court records.

“It is also very important that the organizers openly and strongly condemn anyone who is trying to hook their car to this convoy with ulterior motives and misplaced messages, especially racist stuff.”

Wall cited as an example another protest organizer who was later criminally charged, Pat King, who made comments in a Facebook video about the Anglo replacement theory.

Barber’s communication with Wall is captured in phone records obtained by Ottawa police in their investigation of criminal charges against the trucker, who was arrested Feb. 17.

Barber is currently charged, along with protest organizer Tamara Lich, with intimidation, obstruction of a peace officer and mischief, along with other charges in connection with the three-week occupation. He is currently on bond in Saskatchewan awaiting trial.

Reached by CTV News on Monday, Wall declined to comment on his contact with Barber, saying, “I know him from the Swift Current. He is connected to relatives and I would like to keep that confidential and private.”

A document described as a preliminary version of an analysis of data from a universal forensic extraction device scanned from Barber’s cell phone was introduced into evidence by the Crown ahead of tomorrow’s bail review hearing for Lich, on a new charge. that she violated her previous bail conditions. .

Data records include 26 text messages between Wall and Barber, and four phone calls between their numbers totaling more than 29 minutes in length.

In one text, Wall suggested that the convoy declare “a kind of victory” after some provinces began easing COVID-19 measures.

“I think the convoy is creating some wiggle room for provinces to start moving away from mandates etc,” he texted on Feb. 2.

Wall also suggested that the convoy use the money raised through GoFundMe donations as “the final statement of success” and donate to veterans groups, the Salvation Army and food banks.

On the same date, he asked Barber, “Do you think it might be time to claim victory and end the occupation?”

She also told Barber that her daughter lives in Ottawa and provided her boyfriend’s cell phone number, who said he was willing to help deliver supplies.

In an exchange, they discuss what Barber believes to be unfair coverage of the protest by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.

“I don’t watch or follow CBC,” Wall wrote. “It’s bad for my health.”

Their communication appeared to end on February 7, a week before the federal government invoked the Emergency Law to end the protest that brought the city to a standstill and closed several key border crossings.

Wall served as Saskatchewan’s premier from 2007 to 2018. He is currently listed as special counsel in the Calgary office of the law firm Osler, Hoskin and Harcourt.

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