News . . .
80 Candidates File For New Lumbee Government Seats
PEMBROKE, NC --Fifteen people filed for a seat on the new tribal government for the Lumbee Tribe on Friday, Oct 6, the last day of the filing period.
A total of 80 people have filed for a seat in the new government. The new governing body will consist of a tribal chief and 23 representatives from 18 districts.
The new government may bring an end to bickering between rival groups trying control the tribe’s affairs. The Lumbee Regional Development Association and the Tribal Council of the Lumbee Tribe of Cheraw Indians have fought for control for the past several years.
Jim Lowry, chairman of the Lumbee Self-Determination Commission, said he’s pleased with the quality and caliber of people who filed based on the list he saw earlier this week. Lowry said, “We have a good cross-sectional representation of people that have indicated a desire to serve in the first government of the Lumbee people.”
Jerry McNeil, leader of the Lumbee Tribe of Cheraw Indians, was one of five people to file for tribal chief. Others seeking that position are Harold “Chief Iron Bear” Collins of Pembroke, Pembroke Mayor Milton Hunt, Barker Ten Mile Pastor Ernie Hammonds and Christine Clark of Lumberton.
Under the new tribal government, representatives will serve three-year terms. Candidates have to be enrolled members, at least 21 years old, have full U.S. citizenship, and live in the district they have filed for, except for the chief. Robeson County’s 10 districts will have 14 of the representatives.