One of the Campbell administration's most controversial and powerful deputy ministers is leaving government, Public Eye has learned. Andrew Wilkinson, a former provincial Liberal president and Rhodes scholar, was one of the administration's first hires - this, despite an earlier promise from the premier to appointed civil servants on the "basis of their expertise, not their political stripe." Mr. Wilkinson was also touched by scandal during the recent election campaign when your humble organ, reporting in The Vancouver Sun, discovered he attended a party event in Terrace on the taxpayer's dime. At the time, Mr. Wilkinson said he went to the northern economic diversification conference without knowing it had been organized by the Liberal constituency association in Skeena. Mr. Wilkinson, who most recently headed up the ministry of economic development, is said to be departing to join a major law firm. Before he became a civil servant, he worked for Harper Grey Easton LLP - specializing in health law.
December 18, 2005