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Consensus yet to emerge from 2007 NWT election

The political process of Canada's Northwest Territories is as unique as its landscape. There are no political parties. Instead, candidates are elected by the community based largely on family ties and personality. The N.W.T. has seen dramatic changes from its days of "benign neglect" before 1950 to the evolution of its current consensus-style of government. Deeply rooted in native tradition, the Northwest Territories' distinct form of government has been described as the most interesting parliamentary system in the world.

Sixteen days after electing their MLAs in 2007, the people of the Northwest Territories will finally learn who is to be their premier and which six of the 19 MLAs will be cabinet members. With two days to go before the final secret vote among MLAs, those who want the top job - Floyd Roland and Michael Miltenberger - are lobbying the other members. In this CBC-TV report from Yellowknife, MLA Jane Groenewegen talks about her own ambitions in seeking a cabinet seat and how the consensus process works.
• Incumbent premier Joe Handley, who had taken the job in 2003 and been an MLA since 1999, opted not to run for re-election in 2007.
  • Among the issues in the 2007 election were health care, poverty, daycare and settling land claims with First Nations.

• In the secret ballot on Oct. 17, 2007, Floyd Roland was chosen as premier. The six cabinet members were chosen later that day, and Jane Groenewegen was not among them.

• Like many provinces in Canada, the Northwest Territories has adopted fixed election dates, mandating an election every four years. The next election is to be held on Oct. 3, 2011. 

Medium: Television
Program: Northbeat
Broadcast Date: Oct. 15, 2007
Guest(s): Jane Groenewegen
Reporter: Paul Andrew
Duration: 2:00

Last updated: February 17, 2012

Page consulted on September 10, 2014

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