NEWS
03/18/2016 05:46 EDT | Updated 03/19/2017 01:12 EDT

Liberal government expected to name new senators as early as today

The Liberal government is expected to name at least five new senators as early as today.

There are currently 24 vacancies in the Senate.

Fourteen-time Paralympic gold medallist and world-record-holding wheelchair racer Chantal Petitclerc, who is being mentioned in media reports Friday morning as one of the appointees, tweeted, "There we go: feeling humbled."

Petitclerc was Canada's chef de mission at the 2014 Commonwealth Games. She is also Canada's chef de mission for the Rio Paralympics later this year.

Back in January, the Liberals named an advisory board to help Prime Minister Justin Trudeau make his picks for the Red Chamber.

Only three provinces — Ontario, Manitoba and Quebec — are participating in that advisory board right now. The federal government has stated those three are involved because they have the most vacancies in the Senate.

According to the Senate's website, Ontario has eight vacancies, Quebec has six and Manitoba has four. Nova Scotia and New Brunswick both have two vacancies, while British Columbia and Prince Edward Island have one each.

British Columbia has declined to participate in the advisory board process. Premier Christy Clark said in December that the province declined to take part because it did not want to validate it. She also said B.C. — with a total of six senators allocated to it in the 105-member Senate — is under-represented.

At the time the advisory panel was unveiled, the minister of democratic institutions, Maryam Monsef, reiterated the government's intent to fill at least five vacancies in the early part of 2016.