Two Saskatchewan ministers have decided they will not be returning to cabinet this fall, and have asked to be removed from the upcoming cabinet shuffle scheduled later this month.
Environment Minister Herb Cox will be leaving for health reasons, as he will soon begin stem cell treatment while he battles cancer.
“I have gone through this treatment once before a few years back and I know it would make it extremely difficult to continue to perform my duties as a cabinet minister,” Cox said. “I tremendously enjoy serving in cabinet, but my health has to come first and our caucus is blessed with many other talented members who also deserve the opportunity to serve.
“For that reason, I have spoken with Premier Wall and asked to leave cabinet at the time of the upcoming cabinet shuffle.”
Cox was first elected to the Legislative Assembly in 2011, and was appointed to cabinet as Environment Minister in 2015. He says he will continue to serve as the MLA for the Battlefords. Premier Brad Wall said he will miss Cox at the cabinet table, and the great job he did as Environment Minister.
“Herb Cox has done a good job managing a number of important environmental files, up to and including our government’s ongoing response to the Husky oil spill,” Wall said. “However, I agree with my friend Herb that his health has to come first and everyone in our government is pulling for Herb in his battle with cancer.”
Economy Minister Bill Boyd will also be leaving Cabinet. Boyd is a founding member of the Saskatchewan Party, but has asked Premier Wall to not consider him for a spot in the cabiniet shuffle later this month. Boyd was elected in 1991, and has served in every cabinet since the government was first elected in 2007.
“I have been doing this for a long time, so I think it’s time for me to step back in order for others to have a chance to serve in cabinet,” Boyd said. “Our government is fortunate to have a large and talented caucus, including many new members who were elected for the first time earlier this year, so this is a great opportunity for renewal,” said Boyd.
Premier Wall calls it difficult to lose one of his most experienced cabinet members, but respects Boyd’s decision.
“Bill Boyd has been a key member of cabinet since our very first day in government and I will miss his strong leadership at the cabinet table,” Wall said. “That said, I understand his desire to move to a different role in our government at this stage in his political career. I know he will continue to provide strong leadership within the government caucus as he has at the cabinet table for many years,” said Wall.
Boyd will remain the MLA for Kindersley.