The Platform

Let’s start with acknowledging that the primary job of a City Councillor is to represent the constituents of the ward. This means that the Councillor and their staff should always be available to assist members of the public with City-related issues such as acquiring permits, navigating the City’s various programs, repairing public property, et cetera. Councillors should also be taking regular feedback and suggestions from constituents in order to advocate on their behalf to the City.

This is a basic duty. Every Toronto City Councillor receives a budget of approximately $480,000 to pay the salaries of staff and constituency assistants. On top of that, Councillors receive approximately $50,000 from the City specifically earmarked for providing constituency services and for their constituency offices.

Voters should not be awarding any brownie points for performing these tasks – every City Councillor can do that, and is assisted by the City in doing them. There are, however, additional points to be won by being proactive and truly empowering the people; as opposed to being passively engaged and upholding the status quo.






Wali’s Promise

Canadians have been becoming increasingly disillusioned with our politics. This is reflected in the decreasing voter turnout year after year. Many people have mentally checked out of politics, and have been left to fend for themselves.

They are struggling to make ends meet with ever-rising inflation, stagnating wages, complicated government programs, rising levels of debt, and economic uncertainty. They see all politicians as essentially the same. They feel that no matter whom they vote for, nothing changes. They feel that the system is rigged against them. They feel like they’re being ignored.

They’re right.

The promise of democracy and free markets was that our institutions would be by the people, for the people, and of the people; that everyone had equal rights and equal opportunities; and that everyone could be successful if they simply worked hard because everyone had a level playing field, so all would be fair. This has proven not to be true.

It is clear by simple observation that the systems around us were not built to benefit the masses. They were built to benefit the few – the rich and powerful. What little good we have is either temporary, subject to being taken away in the economic downturn or disruptive market shift; or it is a pittance from the top to placate us and make us think that the system is still working.

If we don’t like it, they say, then we can vote to change it. However, every avenue of engagement is designed to reinforce and uphold the status quo. The poor are disenfranchised and cannot participate in elections at all, as they will always lose to the candidate with more money to spend on photo opportunities and lawn signs. The voting system is fundamentally flawed as a party or candidate can win with less than 50% of the vote – meaning they win even if more than 50% of voters voted for someone else.

We’ve seen this play out numerous times over the years. However, the most egregious example is arguably the most recent. Earlier this year, in the June 2022 Ontario Provincial Elections, Doug Ford won 67% of the seats despite winning only 40% of the popular vote. It is even worse when you consider the low voter turnout of 45%. That means only 17.8% of eligible Ontario voters voted for Doug Ford and his party; and yet, they end up with a supermajority government. That is a clear fraud, and we will stand for it no longer.

Ford and other political elites recognize this. Yet, instead of conceding, they are doubling down on disenfranchisement by cutting Toronto’s local democracy in half; and now, they are introducing “strong mayor” powers for major cities like Toronto to give the mayor dictator-like powers whereby they can overpower the will of City Council’s majority. What is worse is they use the claim of wanting to “make it easier to build affordable housing,” which is an insulting slap to the face of regular people – especially those who most need affordable housing. It is a tricky attack on our already-weak democracy, and we will not stand for it.

That is why Wali will do everything in his capacity as City Councillor to organize and mobilize the people against the oppressive structures we find ourselves in, and help bring forth a new system in a just, peaceful, and orderly manner.

In order to do that, he understands it is imperative to give strength to those who have been most beat down and oppressed by the current order: the poor, the homeless, and the sick in health. It is they who best know the need for a new system, but they cannot mobilize and fight against the current status quo because they are preoccupied with simply survival.

They don’t know where their next meal is going to from, or how they’re going to pay next month’s rent, or if they’re even going to have a safe place to sleep the night. When these things weigh on you, you cannot join the revolution, because all your attention and focus is directed towards basic survival.

Which is why alleviating poverty by guaranteeing dignified permanent housing and provision of basic needs will be Wali’s top priority. A co-equal priority will be electoral reform to eliminate first-past-the-post, and to implement ranked ballots – if not mixed-member proportional – in order to give genuinely democratic voice and power to the people.

Alongside this, Wali will champion formulating a process for citizens’ initiatives whereby any member of the public can gather a minimum number of signatures on a petition, and that demand will automatically go to the public on a ballot for everyone to vote on – thus bypassing status quo politicians altogether.

See more of what Wali believes in, and will fight for, in the full platform below.



































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