Ex-MLA Norman Yakeleya elected Dene National Chief

Norman Yakeleya signs documents last night in Hay River. With him in this Facebook photo are Bill Erasmus and Francois Paulette

Norman Yakeleya is the new Dene National Chief.

The former Sahtu MLA emerged the winner in Hay River on Wednesday night as hundreds of delegates from across the North cast their ballots at the 48th Dene National Assembly.

Yakeleya took 96 of the 232 votes cast, Eileen Marlowe received 75 and 61 people voted for Richard Edjericon.

Yakeleya is also a former chief and councillor in Tulita and an ex-Sahtu negotiator.

He now lives in Yellowknife.

Yakeleya succeeds Bill Erasmus, who steps down as Dene National Chief after the better part of three decades on the job.

CKLB’s Mary Rose Blackduck has been in Hay River and she will report Thursday on the election and other items on the assembly agenda.

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