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'I'm honoured and humbled': Natan Obed re-elected as president of Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami


Natan Obed has been re-elected as president of Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami.

The vote was held during the group’s annual general meeting Thursday morning in Inuvik, N.W.T.

“I’m honoured and humbled for your faith in me for a second term. I’ll do my best to continue implementing our strategy and action plan,” Obed said in his acceptance speech.

“I’m very thankful for the opportunity to hold this job.

Two other candidates were vying for the organization’s top job — Peter Williamson, a former policy analyst, and former MP Peter Ittinuar.

All of the candidates had a chance to speak before the vote. Obed used his time at the mic to focus on successes in his first term, especially work he’s done on suicide prevention among Inuit.

“I’m happy to say that within the first nine months of my term we’ve been able to release [a suicide prevention] plan and we’ve spent the last two years implementing it,” he said.

“I appreciate the faith that you’ve shown me and I ask for another three years to continue to implement this ambitious mandate.

There were 13 eligible voters, all of whom voted.

Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami is a national organization representing 65,000 Inuit living across Canada and in communities throughout Nunavut, Nunavik, Nunatsiavut in Newfoundland and Labrador and the N.W.T.’s Inuvialuit Settlement Region.

The president of the organization holds a three-year term. Obed was first elected to the job in 2015.

During his first term as president, Obed was outspoken about the high rate of suicide in Indigenous communities and climate change, and said that he found the CFL’s Edmonton Eskimos team name racist.

Right after it was announced that Obed won the election, Duane Smith, chair of the Inuvialuit Regional Corporation, gifted him an Edmonton Eskimos hat, which garnered laughter from Obed and others in the room.





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