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Towtongie returns

Incumbent Rankin Inlet mayor narrowly beats challenger
Harry Towtongie is returning for a second term as mayor of Rankin Inlet after the Oct. 23 municipal election. Stewart Burnett/NNSL photo

Harry Towtongie was fielding a lot of phone calls Monday night as the election results came in.

With five out of five polls reporting, Towtongie was re-elected mayor of Rankin Inlet, narrowly surpassing challenger Megan Pizzo-Lyall with 183 votes to her 178.

“I’m thankful to my supporters and I’m thankful to my family, my wife,” said Towtongie Monday night.

He congratulated Pizzo-Lyall on making a good run for it.

“I hope she’ll get in one of these times,” he said. “I congratulate her for all her work.”

Towtongie will be serving his second term as mayor of Rankin Inlet.

“I’m going to try to do better,” he said. “I’m going to try to help my community better and I hope I can last the four years. I’m going to do my best.”

He thanked his supporters again and said he will hopefully make a difference in the community.

“I know that Harry will do the best he can during this term and I wish him all the best,” said Pizzo-Lyall the following morning. “There’s a lot of work ahead of him and I know the new council will keep him on his toes.”

Among the other unofficial municipal election results from Oct. 23, Kevin Iksiktaaryuk was elected mayor of Baker Lake with 226 votes to James Taipana’s 129, while Kevin Tegumiar secured the mayor’s seat in Naujaat with 97 of 136 votes. His competitors were Joseph Sivanertok and Alan Robinson.

In Whale Cove, Oliver Shipton beat Gerard Maktar for mayor with 67 votes to his opponent’s 46.

Simionie Sammurtok became mayor of Chesterfield Inlet against competitors Tony Amauyak and Mary Ann Issaluk.

Acclaimed mayors include Arviat’s Joe Savikataaq Jr. and Coral Harbour’s Kupapik Ningeocheak.

Full results can be found at the Elections Nunavut website at