Hon. Olayuk Akesuk, Minister of Sustainable Development
Constituency Profile: This electoral Constituency stretches along the uplands of southwestern Baffin Island. The major community here is Cape Dorset (pop. 1,148), on the shores of Foxe Peninsula. Known as the birthplace of modern Inuit carving and printmaking, the community draws wealthy collectors from around the world. As a "decentralized" hamlet, around 50 territorial jobs have arrived here since 1999. But the cash-flow from art and government has had a dark side: Substance abuse and violence are felt to be particularly severe here. Southeast of Cape Dorset is the riding's second community, Kimmirut (pop. 433), which profits from carving, as well as from tourism associated with nearby Katannilik Territorial Park. There has been talk of linking this community to Iqaluit via a 160-kilometre road.
Political History: Cape Dorset's Olayuk Akesuk was the giant-killer of the 1999 election, toppling N.W.T. deputy premier Goo Arlooktoo of Kimmirut, who many thought was a shoe-in for the Nunavut premiership. The defeat left Arlooktoo's supporters bitter, and they accused Akesuk, a former economic development officer, of making pie-in-the-sky promises to voters. But the upset may have had more to do with math: Cape Dorset is the biggest community in the Constituency, and locals seemed eager to elect a hometown candidate. Akesuk, born in 1965, is Nunavut's youngest assembly member. He served for a year as a regular MLA before joining cabinet as minister of Sustainable Development.
|Olayuk Akesuk||368 (53.18%)|
|Goo Arlooktoo||232 (33.53%)|
|Matthew Saveakjuk||92 (13.29%)|
|Goo Arlooktoo||256 (33.33%)|
|Matthew Saveakjuk Jaw||162 (21.09%)|
|Peter Kattuk||128 (16.67%)|
|Kenoayoak Pudlat||119 (19.16%)|
|Joe Arlooktoo||100 (16.10%)|
|Padluq Melia||96 (15.46%)|
|Voter turnout||71.79% (third lowest in Nunavut)|
*Prior to 1999, Cape Dorset and Kimmirut were part of the N.W.T.'s Baffin South electoral Constituency, which included the community of Sanikiluaq.