Premier Darrell Pasloski is in South Africa this week to attend the memorial service for Nelson Mandela.
“It’s a great privilege to represent Yukon people at a service of remembrance and celebration for one of the greatest leaders of our time,” said Pasloski in a press release. “I am honoured to be able to help carry the condolences of Yukoners and all Canadians to Nelson Mandela’s family, the people of South Africa and others around the world.”
Prime Minister Stephen Harper invited all Canada’s premiers to join the delegation.
In addition to Pasloski, premiers for Alberta, Nova Scotia and Northwest Territories also accepted the invitation.
The Prime Minister’s Office is covering most of the costs of the trip. The costs to the Yukon government include flying Pasloski to Ottawa and back, and some of his meals while he is away, confirmed cabinet spokesperson Elaine Schiman.
The Yukon legislative assembly is currently in session, and Deputy Premier Elaine Taylor has acted on Pasloski’s behalf in his absence. Next week is the last week of the fall sitting.
The premier is expected to return to the Yukon on Thursday or Friday.
According to media reports, South African officials said at the last minute that not all of the Canadian delegates would be allowed to attend the ceremony. Pasloski would have been among those that did not make the cut.
However, reports indicate that in the end the full delegation entered after some confusion at the security checkpoint.