Leader Jagmeet Singh takes on Indigenous affairs in NDP’s shadow cabinet


OTTAWA — NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh says he’ll be his party’s critic on Indigenous matters and on intergovernmental affairs.

The idea is to emphasize how important the concerns of people who feel ignored by the federal government are to the New Democrats, with their party leader taking charge of files the Liberals have divided among four people.

In revealing the NDP’s shadow cabinet in Ottawa, Singh criticized Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for naming a minister for middle-class prosperity as empty symbolism.

Instead, the New Democrats will have a critic for income inequality and affordability: veteran Ontario MP Charlie Angus.

They’ll also have one for democratic reform to promote changes to the federal voting system, though Trudeau nixed that as a distinct ministry last week.

The party’s last MP from Quebec, Alexandre Boulerice, remains Singh’s deputy leader.

The NDP’s numbers in the House of Commons were cut sharply in the Oct. 21 election, from 39 MPs to 23. With 36 ministers in the Trudeau government, plus a need for whips and caucus officials, practically all of Singh’s critics are doubling or even tripling up with their responsibilities.