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Manitoba premier watching for symptoms after meeting with self-isolating Quebec counterpart

Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister.
Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister.

Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister is watching for symptoms of COVID-19 after meeting with Quebec’s premier, who is now self-isolating after coming into contact with a confirmed case of the virus.

Pallister had a “working lunch” with Quebec Premier François Legault and other Conservative premiers in Ottawa on Friday. Legault announced late on Friday that he is voluntarily self-isolating after meeting one-on-one with federal Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole on Monday.

Legault said Saturday he has tested negative for COVID-19, but will remain in isolation for another eight days as a precaution. The self-isolation comes as COVID-19 cases are rising sharply in Quebec. The province reported 427 new infections on Saturday, the biggest one-day jump since May.

“All public health protocols including mask use and physical distancing were followed during the Premiers’ meeting on Friday, and will continue to be followed while in Ottawa for meetings next week,” a spokesperson for Pallister’s office said in an emailed statement Saturday.

O’Toole, who held several meetings in Montreal, experienced a sore throat on Wednesday and tested positive a day later. An aide who was travelling with him had tested positive earlier in the week.

Members of Pallister’s team were also self-monitoring for symptoms of the virus while they awaited the results of Legault’s test, the spokesperson said. “Premier Pallister and his team are not required to self-isolate as they were not in direct contact with anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19,” the spokesperson added.

Pallister and Legault, along with Ontario Premier Doug Ford and Alberta Premier Jason Kenney, were in Ottawa on Friday to push the federal government for $28 billion in additional funding to cover rising health-care costs. Ford said Saturday he was feeling fine and had no immediate plans to self-isolate or get tested. Pallister did not meet with O’Toole while in Ottawa.

Pallister is in Ottawa this week holding meetings and lobbying on different issues as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau prepares to deliver a speech from the throne on Sept. 23.

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Twitter: @SunGlenDawkins

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