A long-time member of British Columbia's legislative assembly and former cabinet minister, Rich Coleman, has announced he will not seek re-election.
Coleman was first elected as the B.C. Liberal MLA for Fort Langley-Aldergrove in 1996 and was re-elected five more times, most recently as the MLA for the newly created Langley East riding in 2017.
Coleman wrote on Facebook that he chose Feb. 29 to announce the decision because it's the 24th anniversary of his original nomination as a candidate.
Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson thanked Coleman, saying he was “instrumental” in the accomplishments of successive Liberal governments.
Coleman held a number of cabinet positions, including minister of public safety and solicitor general, minister of housing and social development, minister of energy and mines, minister of housing and social development and minister of forests and range.
He also served as deputy premier and stepped into the role of interim leader of the Opposition until the party could choose a new leader following Christy Clark's resignation.
He says he'll continue to represent his riding at the legislature until the next provincial election, slated for 2021.
“Nearly a quarter-century in public life requires significant personal sacrifices,” Wilkinson said in a statement in which he thanked both Coleman and his family.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 29, 2020.