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May 9, 2021

State funeral honours Canada’s NDP leader Jack Layton

Canada’s prime minister, governor general, representatives of political parties and members of the public have attended on Saturday the state funeral in Toronto of opposition leader Jack Layton. They joined family members in a packed hall to pay tribute to Layton, who died aged 61 of cancer last Monday. Just five weeks ago, he stepped down as party leader to fight his illness. His left-leaning New Democratic Party (NDP) surged to become the official opposition for the first time in May’s federal elections. Prime Minister Stephen Harper offered Layton’s family a state funeral – an honour normally re­served for current and former prime ministers, governors general and active members of the federal cabinet. Nearly 3,000 people attended the funeral, which was also televised.

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