A Northlands College board member has been removed from the position after the NDP revealed he has multiple assault convictions.
During Question Period on Tuesday, education critic Carla Beck pointed to Vincent Natomagan’s history of domestic assault and convictions which date back decades and as recent as last month.
He was appointed to the board on November 1, but his name doesn’t appear in the online summary of the order in council available on the government’s website. The premier called it a clerical error.
Natomagan pleaded guilty to domestic assault on Nov. 19.
The revelation came as a shock to Tina Beaudry-Mellor, Minister of Advanced Education.
“Especially in the north where we have really high rates of domestic violence, we have really high rates of interpersonal violence. It’s the wrong message to send. To say that I’m horrified would be an understatement,” said Beaudry-Mellor.
The minister explained it was the first she had heard of the issue and that she would look into it immediately.
By Wednesday, the province removed Natomagan from the Northlands College board which oversees the post-secondary education institution in La Ronge.
The NDP still wants to know how a man with a history of assault was appointed to the board and if anyone was aware of his convictions at the time.
No one seems to know who recommended Natomagan or who knew about his criminal past, not even the premier.
“I’m not aware of anyone that was aware of his history,” said Scott Moe.
On Wednesday, opposition leader Ryan Meili asked the premier at what point did he become become aware of Natomagan’s history. Moe responded with one word.
No criminal record check is required to appoint a board member but that policy might change. Moe said a review will be done, looking at what the policy is in other provinces