Vancouver First candidates Ken Denike and Sophia Woo were greeted with cheers by a group of about 40 supporters who gathered at Chinatown’s Floata Seafood Restaurant to await election results.
It has been a tough campaign for the around 200 volunteers who supported Denike and Woo. Many had been met with drivers who rolled down windows to give them a thumbs down and even passersby who spat on them.
Denike called it a “real disappointment” for the new Canadian volunteers who were campaigning on their behalf for the first time, but is pleased with the support.
“It bodes well for the future,” said Denike.
The supporters at Floata consist mostly of Chinese parents and children, many of whom have followed the controversy of Denike and Woo’s expulsion from the NPA closely and have attended many school board meetings.
Denike said the Chinese vote is “very critical.”
Parent Anda Yau agrees but supports the two for more than just a voice for Chinese parents; but a voice for all frustrated parents who feel they have been ignored at open school board meetings.
Yau is unhappy with the majority Vision Vancouver school board elected in 2011 as Denike and Woo are always the only opposition. She has attended almost every open meeting and was upset when her submitted questions are either ignored or modified when read.
“Vision doesn’t have ears,” said Yau. “They only have hands and mouths.”
She supports Denike and Woo for what she called their sincerity.
Denike is the longest serving city official since first elected to the school board in 1984 but is still a little impatient to see the results.
“Having gone through this 11 times, it’s how it always feels,” said Denike.