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Inquiry into use of Emergencies Act expecting testimony on Alberta border blockades

Jim Willett, Mayor of the Village of Coutts, Alta. poses for a photo on Wednesday March 24, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/David Rossiter

The public inquiry into the federal government's use of the Emergencies Act will continue hearing about protests that took place at an Alberta border crossing earlier this year in support of the "Freedom Convoy."

Jim Willett, mayor of Coutts, Alta., is expected to testify today about the effect protests had on the border town he represents.

Fort Macleod, Alta., councillor Marco Van Huigenbos, who was charged with mischief for his role in the Alberta blockade, told the commission Tuesday he was there to demand representatives from the government talk to protesters about pandemic mandates.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau invoked the Emergencies Act for the first time in Canadian history on Feb. 14, arguing its temporary and extraordinary powers were needed to end blockades in Ottawa and at border crossings.

The Public Order Emergency Commission is examining the Liberal government's decision to invoke the act and holding hearings in Ottawa until Nov. 25.

Ontario deputy solicitor general Mario Di Tommaso is expected to testify this afternoon. 

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 9, 2022.

The Canadian Press

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