Eight hopefuls sign up to be named to Iqaluit council
Councillors expected to choose from applicants next week; seat became vacant when Jack Anawak resigned
Eight Iqaluit residents have signed up, hoping to be appointed to fill a city council seat that has been vacant for three months.
The deadline to register to be considered for the seat was Thursday, and the City of Iqaluit released a list of candidates late Friday afternoon.
City council is expected to review the applications at its next meeting Tuesday night, which will be livestreamed, and inform the successful candidate Wednesday.
The seat on the eight-member council became vacant when Jack Anawak, who was elected in the Oct. 23 municipal election, resigned Nov. 6 after he was charged with impaired driving.
The candidates to replace him are Amber Aglukark, Colin Allooloo, Lili Weemen, Matthew Clark, Nicole Giles, Swany Amarapala, Noah Papatsie and Lewis Falkiner-MacKay.
Falkiner-MacKay finished in ninth place in the October election, earning 525 votes compared to 635 for eighth-place Anawak.
After Anawak’s resignation, Falkiner-MacKay said, “I would be happy to take on the position on council if chosen.”
Papatsie, who is legally blind, claimed in November he was unable to run in the municipal election due to the inaccessibility of the Elections Nunavut website. He is a former city councillor.
Amarapala was appointed to council in December 2022, filling Mayor Solomon Awa’s seat after he was appointed mayor due to the resignation of Kenny Bell. Amarapala ran for council in 2023 but finished in 10th place, behind Falkiner-MacKay, with 474 votes.
Under the Nunavut Elections Act, council had two options to fill the seat vacated by Anawak. Councillors can appoint the runner-up from the last election or issue a public call for applicants.
Last year, council directed city staff to formulate a proposal for a policy to be used in filling council vacancies.
Since then, council has rejected two policy proposals. Both drafts included a provision to allow council to appoint a candidate from the last election who was not elected.
Even without a permanent policy in place, council issued the callout for candidates on Jan. 29.