Jackson Lafferty, acclaimed MLA for Monfwi, has at least one supporter for the position of premier.
At an all-candidates forum for Nahendeh candidates Wednesday night in Fort Simpson, incumbent Shane Thompson said, if elected, he would support Lafferty and would also run for cabinet.
Lafferty stated in a Sept. 16 article that he would “seriously consider” running for premier.
Other candidates who have come out stating an interest in the position include RJ Simpson, acclaimed candidate for Hay River North and Wally Schumann who is in a two-way race in Hay River South.
Caroline Cochrane, incumbent MLA candidate for Range Lake, has told other media outlets that the next premier should be a woman.
“I had said it the last time and I will say it again. Jackson Lafferty,” Thompson said at the forum.
“I believe Jackson should be the premier because he comes from a small community and understands what a small community’s needs, wishes and desires are. He also has experience. He has 14 years at the legislative assembly as a regular MLA. He spent the last four years sitting as a speaker and seeing how government works moving forward.”
The comment came in response to an audience question from Fort Simpson businessman Chuck Blythe who wanted to know who candidates would support for premier, who ought to be in cabinet and what they felt the overall priorities of the government should be.
The other candidates, Randal Sibbeston, Mike Drake, and Eric Menicoche were all less definitive in their answers.
Lafferty said he had heard rumours about Thompson’s endorsement but had been at another forum in Yellowknife, so had no idea what was said.
“I understand that some in the community were asking and Shane must have just came out and said it but I’m not sure about the other responses,” he said. “I don’t have much information.”
Lafferty said it did somewhat put him on the spot and he is still “seriously considering” whether to seek the position after the election and orientation period. In the meantime, he is seeking advice from Monfwi constituents and other leaders throughout the territory.