Tribal Councilwoman Anita Hammonds-Blanks is challenging the
outcome of the District 9 race during the November 17 tribal election.
Blanks, who lost by three votes, are protesting that four tribal
members voted out of district. The Election Board will hold a hearing
at 5 pm on Wednesday, December 3.
On Election night, Elaine McNeil Collins received 199 votes and
Blanks had 197 votes. An automatic recount was held because tribal
election law requires it if the vote difference between two candidates
is within a range of 1 percent of the total number of ballots cast.
The recount ended with Collins receiving 200 votes and Blanks, 197.
District 9 includes the Saddletree community.
Any action taken by the Election Board should be announced on
Thursday, December 4, according to Sheila-Beck Jones, chairwoman
of the Tribal Election Board.
Aside from the District 9 race, all of the other council races and the
chairman race were officially certified on November 24, according to
The results of the Tribal Chairman’s race was also certified. Harvey
Godwin Jr. was named the new Tribal Chairman after receiving 41
percent of the total votes cast. Godwin defeated incumbent Paul
Brooks and three other challengers. Chairman Godwin will take office
in January. He will serve a three-year term. A date has not been set
for the swearing-in ceremony.
The official winners of the contested Tribal Council races are
incumbent Bobby Oxendine, District 5; Reginald Oxendine Jr., District
7; Janet Locklear, District 10; and Barbara Lowery, District 14.
Lakisha Spaulding Sweat (District 1) and Incumbent Jonathan
Locklear (District 4) were unopposed.
A date has not been set for the swearing-in ceremony of the new
council members. The terms are for three years.