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Bellegarde to run for national chief

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Compiled by Shari Narine







Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations Chief Perry Bellegarde is the first to declare his intentions to seek the position of National Chief for the Assembly of First Nations. Bellegarde took Shawn Atleo to a record eighth round of voting in Calgary in 2009 before conceding. Atleo was re-elected in 2012. Bellegarde did not run. Atleo resigned on May 1, 2014, amidst complaints he was too friendly with the Harper government. Bellegarde was among Atleo’s critics at that time. Bellegarde said as new AFN chief, he would focus on an “immediate action plan and inquiry” into missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls; commitment to revitalizing and retaining Indigenous languages; establishing a new fiscal relationship with the Crown; and “establishing processes for self-determination,” including revenue sharing, environmental sustainability, and duty to consult. Bellegarde, a member of the Little Black Bear First Nation in southern Saskatchewan, has served three terms as FSIN chief. Nomination deadline is Nov. 4. The new AFN chief will be elected at an assembly in Winnipeg on Dec.10.