Weyburn group glad they went to Ottawa for convoy rally

Regina – By the afternoon of Feb. 20, some of the Weyburn contingent in the United We Roll! convoy to Ottawa had made it back to the Land of Living Skies, having flown back. And to a one, they all thought the effort to take a message to Ottawa about the need for pipelines, opposition to the carbon tax, and related issues, was worth it.

Dale Mainil, Josh Mainil, Terry Benning and Cliff Anderson spoke to Pipeline Newson their way back from the Regina airport. Dale, Terry and Cliff has flown out to Ottawa. Josh had driven the Jerry Mainil Ltd. semi, which was covered with signs, along with Kent LaCoste. Josh was spelled off by Calvin Tracey, who flew out for the rally and would be driving back with Kent.

Terry is a Weyburn-area farmer, and his semi grain truck, with giant decals on the side, was parked right at the gate to Parliament. It had been driven there by Doug Brownridge. Cliff owns Southern Glass in Weyburn, and Dale works with Jerry Mainil Ltd in addition to farming. Josh spent several years working on Panther Drilling’s rigs, and now spends most of his time on the farm.

Cliff said, “I’m glad I went. I went to see first hand what it was really like. I felt a bit like a pep rally.”

He noted there were some on the fringes, including the counter protesters. But he said there were probably 30 counter-protesters, and many more people there as part of the United We Roll! group. “We had a big contingent,” he said.  

He wasn’t too pleased with the United We Roll! group being forced to stand in deep snow instead of on the dry sidewalk when they listened to the speeches. “The herded us like cattle,” he said.

“We had a good turnout. It was a very positive thing,” Cliff said.

Dale said, “I’d do it again. We’ve got to continue doing it.”

He noted it was a big commitment, with eight to nine days of driving.

“The United We Roll! crew did an excellent job coordinating,” Dale said.

Josh, who drove in the convoy, said, “There was an unreal amount of support along the way. I’d like to know how many thousands of people were along the road.”

He said in several places, a couple hundred people could be seen, gathered along a few blocks in communities along the way.

He was surprised at how many women he saw, holding their babies, having brought their families, to stand along the road and wave the convoy on.

The four were impressed by the speech of Jason LeBlanc, an Estevan farmer and auctioneer, who spoke at length of the impact of the carbon tax on agriculture and society as a whole.

“He delivered. It was a big undertaking,” Dale said.

Terry’s truck with its big green and yellow sign, could be seen in a lot of the coverage. “I was quite pleased there was a couple of us representing agriculture,” he said, noting the carbon tax is something the ag sector hasn’t really thought about.

“Somebody has to step up, and that’s why I did it,” he said. He’s going to keep the decals on the truck for a while, probably until the oil show this summer.

Dale concluded by saying, “We’ve got to continue this.”

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