Lawyer Insists Band Forced to Hold New Election

Thursday, December 04, 2003 at 13:04



A lawyer is threatening to take the Black Lake First Nation to court if the band doesn’t hold another election this month.


Ben Partyka represents the two men who have launched an appeal of last January’s band election — Freddie Throassie and Donald Sayazie.


In a notice of appeal filed earlier this year, it’s alleged that off-reserve members of the First Nation were flown into the community for their votes in that election, using band funds.


Throassie and Sayazie were running for chief, but lost the election to incumbent Victor Echodh.


In an assembly called by the chief electoral officer this past Friday, band members voted in favour to dissolve the current chief and council and hold another election sometime between Christmas and New Year’s Day.


Partyka says he’s waiting to hear a response from the lawyer representing the band, but says if a new election is not called, his only option might be the courts.


Partyka says if he has to take the matter to court, he may ask the judge to appoint a third party to run the affairs of the band until a new election is called.