Incumbent Thebacha MLA Louis Sebert confirmed he is seeking re-election in this fall’s territorial election.
Sebert and Denise Yuhas have so far publicly declared their intent to stand in the district, which encompasses Fort Smith and the nearby Bell Rock estates.
At least one other candidate is expected to join them. Nominations open in early September.
Outlining his platform to Cabin Radio on Tuesday, Sebert gave the clearest indication yet of his belief that Aurora College, and its polytechnic university successor, must remain headquartered in Fort Smith.
“I’d like to keep as many jobs here as possible, of course. We have the resources here, we have the people here, we have the infrastructure here,” said Sebert, who taught part-time at the college over a 30-year period.
“[Fort Smith] should remain the major centre of education here in the territories.”
Sebert said he wants to be at the table when decisions about the college are made by the next government.
“You are able to bring the concerns of your community to the government,” he said, when asked what made him want to run for re-election. “I think there’s some very important issues coming up and I’d like to be involved in those discussions.”
Sebert also brought up the potential Taltson hydro system expansion – which got a small sum of funding earlier this year – and said “if a business case can be made … we should definitely look at it, because it would provide stability for the whole system.
“If we are able to export [power], it could assist us in reducing rates,” he continued. “It occurs to me the provinces with the lowest rates are those who are able to export.”
Sebert is currently the minister of justice and lands, and is also the minister responsible for public engagement and transparency.
According to his profile on the Legislative Assembly website, he served for 14 years as a councillor and deputy mayor in Fort Smith prior to his election as Thebacha MLA four years ago..
Sebert’s background is in private practice law.
He has volunteered in Fort Smith with the Chamber of Commerce, District Education Authority, Royal Canadian Legion Branch 239, Arthritis Society, and Tennis Club, he said.
Cabin Radio will feature extensive interviews with NWT election candidates beginning at the start of September, when nominations officially open. Bookmark our NWT Election 2019 homepage to follow our coverage.