Election for Tłıchǫ grand chief postponed

Tłı̨chǫ citizens at this year's annual general assembly. (Marie Rose Blackduck/CKLB)

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak and containment order in Behchokǫ̀, the Tłıchǫ grand chief election has been postponed.

The new election date is Nov. 18.

Gabrielle Mackenzie-Scott, the election registrar, issued notice of the postponement after discussions with the office of the chief public health officer.

“Safety of Tłıchǫ citizens and staff is of the utmost importance ̨ and it is not currently safe to
proceed with election activities as planned
,” reads the notice.

It adds that the current COVID situation does not allow the registrar to conduct the election “that will provide Tłıchǫ voters the fair and equal opportunities they need to cast their ballot…”

Mail-in ballots still accepted

Mail-in ballots have been accepted since Sept. 1, and will continue despite the postponement.

Ballots that have already been issued will still be counted normally and stored by the registrar.

The office of the registrar will be closed until further notice, but Tlicho citizens can still request mail-in ballots at this time via phone or email. The ballots will then be issued beginning next month.

Here are the new new poll dates:

  • Nov. 1-5: Voting at the office of the registrar
  • Nov. 8: Mobile poll
  • Nov. 10: Advance poll
  • Nov. 18: Election day

The registrar is also considering a digital voting option. More details are expected in October on whether this will be considered a valid option.

Jackson Lafferty, Eddie Erasmus and George Mackenzie are the three candidates running for grand chief.

About the Author

Francis Tessier-Burns
Francis has been a general news reporter with CKLB since January 2019. Originally from rural Ontario, he first came to the NWT in 2016 as an intern with Up Here magazine and fell in love with the North. In his time with CKLB, he's had the immense pleasure and honour of learning about northern Indigenous cultures. Otherwise, you can find him hanging around the Legislative Assembly. If you have a story or want to chat, reach out to francis@cklbradio.com