POLITICS
10/02/2019 09:52 EDT | Updated 10/02/2019 12:43 EDT

Northwest Territories Sees Record Number Of Women Win Seats In Election

Nine out of 19 MLAs elected are female, unofficial poll results show.

(Image: Facebook)
(From left to right) Paulie Chinna, Caroline Wawzonek and Caitlin Cleveland were three of nine elected female MLAs in the Northwest Territories' provincial election, Oct. 1, 2019. Only two women were elected to serve as MLAs in the last election in 2015.

It was a historic night for the Northwest Territories as a record number of women were elected Tuesday in the election there. 

Unofficial poll results from Elections NWT show nine women emerged victorious in the 19 seats up for grabs. Only two women were elected to serve as MLAs in the last election in 2015. The previous record for female representation in the territory was set in 2007 when three women were elected. 

Paulie Chinna, Caroline Cochrane, Julie Green, Caroline Wawzonek, Diane Thom, Lesa Semmler, Frieda Martselos, Caitlin Cleveland and Katrina Nokleby all won their seats to serve in the 19th Legislative Assembly. 

Other winners include Ronald Bonnetrouge, Kevin O’Reilly, Rocky Simpson, Shane Thompson, Jackie Jacobson, Steve Norn and Rylund Johnson. Some of the races were decided by only a handful of votes and recounts may be necessary. 

There were also some surprises. Wally Schumann, the industry minister, lost to Rocky Simpson for Hay River South in what was a close race. Another incumbent, Louis Sebert, lost his seat in Thebacha. Sebert had served as minister of lands and minister of justice. 

Some other notable names will not be part of the legislature moving forward. Premier Bob McLeod did not run for re-election. Glen Abernethy and Robert C. McLeod, who both served as cabinet ministers, also pulled their names from contention. 

The next step for the Northwest Territories will be to select a new premier. Since there are no party politics in the territory, the new leader must be elected by the 19 MLAs.

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