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La Loche mayor expresses concern over PM’s trip north ahead of his COVID-19 diagnosis

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La Loche Mayor Georgina Joliboisis, concerned residents were at risk of being affected by COVID-19 because of Prime Minister Scott Moe’s visit to the community just days before it came out positive on Thursday.

She is urging him to explain why he did not take a test on Monday, before heading to the community, about 850km northwest of Regina. And in a Facebook post, Joliboiss said she sent a letter to Moe’s office on the issue after learning of his COVID-19 status online.

The Prime Minister was not immediately available for comment. But his office directed the CBC in a statement posted on Moe’s Facebook page, which was published two hours after Jolibois’s letter was posted.

In the post, Moe said he came out negative on a quick test late Sunday before traveling to northern Saskatchewan the next day. And the prime minister said he announced all possible close contacts as envisaged in public health contact managementdocument.

However, Jolibois, who is also the NDP candidate in the upcoming provincial elections, said she is concerned about the people he saw while traveling north on Monday and Tuesday.

Between Moe’s Sunday and Thursday tests, he was photographed at several public events.

On Monday, he was at an announcement at Ducharme Elementary School in La Loche and participated in a discussion on mental health and addiction support at Pinehouse, Lac La Ronge and Buffalo Narrows.

He also attended a press conference with members of the media in Regina on Wednesday.

Jolibois said people who attended the school event in La Loche “where many unvaccinated children were present” had contacted him and that only a few of them were reported to be in close contact.

Along with justifying his decision not to use a speedy test on Monday, Jolibois called on the prime minister to announce all possible close contacts and provide a “comprehensive list” of all communities that cabinet members his traveled this week.

Jolibois was not available for comment on Friday.

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The Prime Minister’s post noted that those informed were limited to a 48-hour timeframe; or anyone who met the criteria for being in close contact 48 hours before being tested positive, or showing symptoms of COVID-19.

Moetested positive Thursday morning.

The prime minister’s press secretary, Julie Leggott, said earlier that those who attended Monday’s events and rallies were not considered close contacts because they were outside the 48-hour window as identified by public health.

“Since Prime Minister Moe came out positive this morning, any activity on or before January 10 falls outside that time period,” Leggott said.

The post does not provide a list of all the communities visited by Moe or members of his cabinet this week, as required by Jolibois.

“I look forward to visiting your community again,” concludes the post by Moe.

Moe’s trip to North Saskatchewan and Jolibois’s letter comes as a default will be held in the provincial riding of Athabasca.

NDP’s Buckley Belanger was the leader for a long time in that country, but resigned to run federally on the Desneth-Missinippi-Churchill River as a liberal. However, he failed to get riding.

Athabaska snap elections are due by February 15

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2/ https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/saskatchewan/scott-moe-covid-19-laloche-1.6314984

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