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Chief Ernest Betsina is sworn in as Dettah’s leader

Mayor of Yellowknife Rebecca Alty, left, and Chief Ernest Betsina. Emelie Peacock/Cabin Radio

Ernest Betsina has begun his role as Chief of Dettah, taking over from the outgoing Edward Sangris, the Yellowknives Dene First Nation says.

Betsina defeated Bobby Drygeese in an election to succeed Sangris nearly three weeks ago, but the evacuation of the Yellowknife region – including Dettah and Ndılǫ – took place almost immediately after the election concluded.

Chief Sangris remained in position to oversee much of the community’s response, and has made regular appearances in press conferences.

On Sunday, the First Nation said Betsina had been sworn in as the new chief earlier that day.

Sangris departs after serving four consecutive terms as chief, spanning 16 years.



Chief Fred Sangris remains the leader of Ndılǫ, where he is partway through his own four-year term. Betsina was his predecessor as Ndılǫ chief.

Meanwhile, the Yellowknives Dene First Nation said councillor elections that had been due to take place on August 28 will now be held at a later date.

The First Nation gave no specific date but said polling day would take place “as soon as possible.”