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Canadian MP with ALS named Honourary Speaker of the House of Commons

After the Canadian election, MP Mauril Belanger announced his intention to run for speaker, before abruptly withdrawing from the race due to a diagnosis of ALS.

Yesterday, after a unanimous vote by the House, Belanger was made Honourary Speaker, and took part in the daily opening of the House. He is no longer able to speak, and so used an App on his iPad to communicate, including to say the daily prayer.

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In a particularly touching moment, the singer of National Anthemn for the day, NDP MP Christine Moore sang the line “in all of us command” rather than the official “in all our sons command”. Back in January, Mauril Belanger introduced a private member’s bill to change the wording of the national Anthemn to the version that Moore sang.

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