Edmonton’s Ward 6 covers the entire southeast section (Mill Woods) of Edmonton and includes some of the most ethnically diverse areas of the City. Not shying away from its reputation for delivering raucous election campaigns, Ward 6 presents an interesting race for 2007.
With the overdue retirement of long-time Councillor Terry Cavanagh (who was appointed and defeated as Mayor two-times since first being elected to Council in 1971), there are no shortage of candidates lining up for the challenge of representing Ward 6.
Incumbent Dave Theile, who was first elected in 1998, is seeking re-election. Though I like Theile’s easy-going style, he may be reaching the point of getting too comfortable in his City Council chair. Hopefully he won’t fall victim to the ‘big chair syndrome’ if he is re-elected on Monday.
Two of the main challengers lined up are Chinwe Okelu and Amarjeet Sohi, and both are in a dog fight with each other after mounting very strong campaigns (and both aren’t shying away from their partisan connections to help them over the top – Okelu as a Liberal and Sohi as a New Democrat).
Okelu, who has run in Ward 6 in 1998, 2001, and 2004, placed a very strong third in 2004 against Cavanagh. This is Sohi’s second run at Ward 6, having placed a strong fourth in 2004.
I’ve met both candidates a number of times and though both would be effective advocates for Ward 6, I’ve been particularly impressed with Amarjeet Sohi’s work with Public Interest Alberta.
With both of the main challengers holding decent name recognition, boasting strong teams and platforms, and campaigning hard I wouldn’t be surprised if either of them won (or if both of them won).
Tomas Dennis Vasquez
2004 Election Results
Dave Thiele – 16,128
Terry Cavanagh – 14,725
Chinwe Okelu – 12,877
Amarjeet Sohi – 8,077
Barbara Ann Thompson – 6,339
Terry McKinnon – 2,908
Sean Diakiw – 1,013