Chief responds to TV-for-votes allegation
A suggestion that a TV was raffled off to encourage people to vote Liberal was added to the list of allegations swirling around a northern Saskatchewan riding this week.
Liberal Gary Merasty was elected MP for Desnethé-Missinippi Churchill River by 106 votes on Monday night.
The defeated incumbent, Conservative Jeremy Harrison, said he's received reports of a variety of irregularities, including ballot box stuffing and the TV story. The allegation is that people on Ahtahkakoop Cree Nation were given a chance to win a television if they voted Liberal.
The chief of a Saskatchewan First Nation says there was a raffle for a free TV, but it wasn't intended just for Liberal voters. Instead, according to Chief Larry Ahenakew, it was simply an incentive for people to vote.
"We gave a free raffle to anybody that was there, not only Gary's office," he said. "It was open to the PCs, NDP, Green Party, anybody."
It is against the law to encourage anyone to vote for a particular party by offering payment or a gift.
However, Elections Canada was not able to say if a raffle open to all voters would be illegal.
A spokesperson said the agency will investigate if there is a complaint about the TV raffle.