Following the departure of five cabinet ministers — all who are seeking the leadership of the SaskParty — Premier Brad wall has shuffled his cabinet.
Five ministers remained in cabinet with new portfolios, five MLA’s are entering cabinet including four who are first time ministers, while six other ministers did not see a change.
The most talked-about move was Kevin Doherty leaving the Finance portfolio for Advanced Education. He is being replaced by two-time Social Services Minister Donna Harpauer.
Doherty says with the leadership role changing next year he felt now was the time to bring in a fresh face with the finance portfolio.
“As we’re going through this transition,” Doherty said. “The discussions I’ve had with the Premier as to where I could best support him and support the government. I was prepared to look at something else and perhaps even take a step back altogether from cabinet and serve in that capacity.”
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Donna Harpauer says she is ready to take on the role of Finance Minister and honoured to accept the role.
“I’ve always been surprised by every portfolio the Premier has asked me to do, but honoured to step into the job,” Harpauer told 620 CKRM News after the announcement. “I will work very, very hard in the Finance file. I’ve had a lot of experience in different portfolios and also experience on treasure boards. I look forward to this. It’s going to be challenging.”
Harpauer says despite the possibility of another shuffle when the new Premier takes office, she will work as if she will be the one to deliver the next provincial budget.
Premier Wall says he has full confidence in Harpauer to take over in Finance.
“I’m very pleased that Donna Harpauer has agreed to take on the role as Minister of Finance,” Wall said. “She has served in cabinet from the very beginning. We were elected together. She has a reputation across government for asking the right questions and being very thorough.”