11/10/2011 07:10 EST | Updated 01/10/2012 05:12 EST

Saskatchewan man asks court for recount in close election on First Nation

PELICAN NARROWS, Sask. - A candidate who ran for chief in an election for a northern Saskatchewan First Nation has had his appeal for a recount heard by a federal court.

Harold Linklater went before the court Thursday via video conference.

Linklater finished nine votes back of incumbent chief Darrell McCallum in an election in April on the Peter Ballantyne First Nation, and 48 ballots were spoiled.

Linklater asked for a recount, but chief electoral officer Ted J. Merasty rejected his request.

Linklater argued in court that the integrity of the First Nation government is questioned if a recount is not allowed.

A decision is expected in about a month.