The Online Party of Canada held its very first press conference Wednesday in Toronto. The party leader introduced the Agora Project and announced its political initiatives in the riding by-elections of Calgary and Durham.
Elections Canada recently granted the Online Party of Canada (OPC) with official registered status. One of the newest political parties in the country wants voters to become politically engaged and present their views on legislation and debate in the House of Commons via the Internet.
Speaking at Ryerson University, Michael Nicula, leader of the web-based party, announced the party’s politically innovative and technologically-advanced Agora Project, an initiative that will connect voters and their Members of Parliament.
OPC members will be permitted to vote on each piece of legislation, send their votes to the MPs, and study to understand where the political parties stand on specific bills. Nicula argues that this will completely change the way citizens take part in democracy and provide direct participation in the political process.
If the OPC MP does not cast a vote based on the majority of the party members for proposed laws then he or she would have to step down. Nicula explained that you don’t have to wait until the next election cycle to remove the incumbent from office.
Ontario Party of Canada
The Online Party of Canada
“The Accountability Act is basically a Promissory Letter of Resignation (that was the original name),” explained Nicula is an email to Digital Journal. “You must sign it in order to become a candidate or party official. Petitions don't work.”
With Conservative Calgary MP Lee Richardson and Tory Durham MP Bev Oda resigning, there will be federal by-elections in their respective ridings. The OPC will have a field of candidates to contest the seats, but they have not been named yet. Furthermore, the party already has four candidates vying for a federal seat in the next election, which is scheduled for 2015. Nicula confirmed that he will “definitely be a candidate.”
“OPC's mission is to create a viable alternative to the traditional political system. We believe voters should vote on individual issues instead of 'packaged' platforms, true leaders instead of 'voting machine' politicians, and policies instead of parties,” stated Nicula.
Click here to see Digital Journal’s in-depth coverage of the OPC and an interview with its leader.