Doug Elford was president of the new Surrey Community Alliance party, which intended to challenge Surrey First in the upcoming civic election. Elford has resigned as president and council candidate of the party, to instead run with former Surrey mayor Doug McCallum in the Oct. 20 election. (File photo)

Doug Elford resigns from his Surrey party to run with McCallum

Surrey Community Alliance candidate says the team isn’t giving up and ‘refused to jump ship’ like Elford

Doug Elford confirms he has resigned from the Surrey Community Alliance party he formed to run alongside former mayor Doug McCallum in the upcoming civic election.

Elford was president of the newly formed political party that aimed to challenge the reigning Surrey First party in the Oct. 20 election, before deciding to run with the former mayor instead.

“Surrey is at a crossroads,” Elford told the Now-Leader. “We cannot continue down the path of special favours for developers to the detriment of affordability. No more closed door meetings, overseas junkets and financial mismanagement.

“It’s time to get this city back on a path of affordability, crime reduction, increased transparency and financial strength,” he added.

“The best way to do that is getting rid of Surrey First and the person with the best chance is Doug McCallum.”

The former mayor garnered 28,010 votes in the last 2014 election — or 26.88 per cent of total votes — coming second only to current Surrey Mayor Linda Hepner.

A release dated Aug. 11 was sent to media by former SCA campaign managers Gord Savard and Sharon Goldberg. It said the party is withdrawing from the municipal election and cited funding as a “major reason” for the decision.

“We had excellent candidates,” the release stated. “In previous campaigns under the old legislation, the old group Surrey Matters already had $30,000 in donations to take care of pre-election expenses like signs, leaflets and office space. This time around we are not even near that amount, to run a reasonable campaign.”

But, a release sent to the Now-Leader by a member of the Surrey Community Alliance, Imtiaz Popat, said Elford’s split was what really caused the “demise” of the party.

That Aug. 12 release stated an emergency meeting of SCA candidates was held last Friday (Aug. 10) to announce Elford’s resignation and that “the campaign was being dissolved.”

Popat said other members of SCA were also approached by McCallum but said they “refused to jump ship because we understand that some of the issues we were raising such (as) gang violence and homelessness were ignored by Doug McCallum when he was mayor.”

“We are not giving up,” Popat added. “We are looking at other options to continue our campaign and we are confident we can raise the funds in the coming few weeks to run an effective campaign for City Council and School Board.”

Surrey voters head to the polls on Oct. 20.

Other election news:

See also: People First Surrey announces first two candidates

See also: Former Surrey First Councillor Bruce Hayne to run for mayor

See also: Tom Gill is Surrey First’s mayoral candidate

See also: Hayne splits from Surrey First: ‘It’s just not open and transparent the way I’d like it to be’

See also: Surrey First’s Mary Martin not seeking re-election this fall

See also: Surrey First Councillor Judy Villeneuve not seeking re-election this fall

See also: Five Surrey First councillors now reveal interest in mayor’s chair

See also: Surrey First Councillor Judy Villeneuve not seeking re-election this fall

See more: New civic slate Proudly Surrey aims to offer ‘sharp, strong, left-leaning’ candidates

See more: Proudly Surrey introduces two more candidates for Surrey council, schoolboard

See more: Surrey Community Alliance announces intention to challenge Surrey First in civic election

See more: Surrey Community Alliance unveils civic slate, but no mayoral candidate

See more: People First Surrey party reveals intention to run in upcoming civic election

See more: Five Surrey First councillors now reveal interest in mayor’s chair

See more: With Surrey Mayor Linda Hepner out, who is mulling a mayoral run?

See more: Hawthorne Park crusader to run for Surrey council

Click here to see more election news.

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