Quebec solidaire is betting on a candidate little known to the public to keep the riding of Mercier, in Montreal, left vacant by the departure of MP Amir Khadir.
Ruba Ghazal, a long-time political activist on the left, announced on Monday morning that she will bid for the inauguration in Mercier on June 21st.
In an interview, Ms. Ghazal suggests that this notorious public deficit should not be a drag on her campaign.
“Valérie Plante, she was not known to anyone and look where she is,” she says visibly confident.
The 40-year-old woman mentions at the same time that Manon Massé and Amir Khadir were also not public figures when they were elected under the banner of solidarity.
Ruba Ghazal even believes that his course, if successful, could inspire other ordinary citizens to apply.
“We must reclaim the places of power,” she enthuses. It’s not a skill to be a star! ”
Ruba Ghazal has been linked to Québec solidaire since the founding of the political party in the mid-2000s. However, his involvement has been far from the spotlight … with a few exceptions.
In 2007 and 2008, you could see his face on the Quebec Solidaire electoral signs in the Laurier-Dorion riding of Montreal.
And also in 2007, she had testified alongside Françoise David at the Bouchard-Taylor Commission.
In 2011, this defender of open secularism left its mark in the book “Quebec in search of secularism”, led by Normand Baillargeon and Jean-Marc Piotte.
Born in Beirut, Lebanon, where her family of Palestinian origin had taken refuge, Ruba Ghazal immigrated to Quebec at the age of 10.
A few years later, she earned a Bachelor’s degree in accounting from HEC Montréal, then a master’s degree in environment from Sherbrooke University.
Since then, Ruba Ghazal has spent her career in environmental management in large companies. After working at Bombardier and Church & Dwight, she now holds the position of Director of Health, Safety and Environment at OI, an American multinational manufacturing glass containers.
Is it not in contradiction with the solidarity discourse that is very critical of multinationals?
“We could think that, she agrees. But after doing my master’s degree in environment, I wanted to make things happen where there is pollution. […] I have never seen it as a contradiction. I wanted to be where things were going. ”
In announcing his candidacy for the investiture in Mercier, Ruba Ghazal promised to make the legacy of Amir Khadir live by “doing politics differently”.
“It is this sincere policy that convinced me to answer the call of the public service,” she says.
Amir Khadir had swept the Mercier constituency to the Péquistes in 2008, which allowed him to become the first deputy in the National Assembly. He was subsequently re-elected in 2012 and 2014