The territory’s new Ottawa representative says she was proud to make it official in Iqaluit.
Lori Idlout felt “immense joy for Nunavummiut” as she was sworn in as Nunavut’s member of Parliament in both Inuktitut and English on Friday morning. Idlout took the oath after 10 a.m. in Ottawa, under the close supervision of House of Commons clerk Charles Robert. The crowd of nearly 40 persons at the Astro Theatre gave her a standing ovation.
In an interview, she said, “I’m just honored to have been elected to represent Nunavummiut.” Elisapee Tatigat Avingaq, throat singers Kristen Kownak and Alexia Alainga, and drum dancer Mathew Nuqingaq performed at the ceremony.
When Idlout was given the option of being sworn in remotely, she knew she wanted to include elements of Inuit culture and began recruiting performers. Idlout told the crowd, “I just wanted to share my pride in being Inuk and how beautiful our culture is with our performances.”
“This was something we could never have imagined at the time.” So, here we are,” Anawak stated as the ritual came to an end. Former Liberal MP Jack Anawak, who hosted the event, said that he couldn’t imagine that there’d be an Inuk member of Parliament when he was growing up. In an interview, Elisapi Aningmiuq, who lit the qulliq to begin the ritual, said a qulliq is an essential tool used to signify an important event.
Aningmiuq said, “It’s a wonderful pleasure to include the qulliq, which brings light, hope, and warmth.” After a prayer, Elisapi Aningmiuq ignites the qulliq to begin Idlout’s swearing-in ceremony. Idlout said she is looking forward to growing to work and the first House of Commons sitting on Nov. 22.
source: Nunatsiaq news