Naabik’iyati Committee is now on Legislation 0011-14, which is to nominate a replacement for Speaker Naize when the Council removes Naize as speaker. The Council convenes its five day winter session on Jan. 27, Monday. Delegate Alton Shepherd is also sponsor of this Legislation.
DELEGATE LORENZO CURLEY
The Navajo Nation is putting its legitimacy at stake. It’s messy. But I feel that because of the interest involved, the money, a lot of money is being overseen by Speaker. So you have a charge of impropriety involving financial affairs. What is the logical thing to do?
That is how I see this. There are instances we don’t know about that are also pending. That calls into question integrity on how the Speaker’s Office should be operated. So we can no longer avoid the issue. If I was the speaker, I’d step aside for the good of the council. I will give him that opportunity form now until Council session. But if he refuses to voluntarily step down then he will force me to vote to remove him.
And he is in the spot light. There are a lot of charges that are really questionable. It only will take one defendant to be found guilty and the rest, including Speaker Naize, will fall. So far the nation has spent $5 million on special prosecutors. How much will we endure for special prosecutors to file on “trivial” matters. But that does not take away from the criminal charges against Speaker Naize.
But the longer we take to make a decison, the longer our legitimacy is at stake. This is not about him being innocent or guilty. It is about propriety.
SPEAKER PRO TEMP MEL BEGAY
It might be appropriate to table this legislation since this legislation would not go into effect until after legislation to remove Naize as speaker is approved.
DELEGATE KATHERINE BENALLY
Speaker Naize until 2015. Those 18 comments are nothing. The nation supports Naize. I support Naize. And you better not push me. Naize is my brother.
DELEGATE LEONARD TSOSIE
At my constituency level, I have not had one single person come to me to vote to keep Naize. They have told me they are very concerned about what is going on so I’m trying to figure out what to do. I also feel that lot rest with speaker. I was reading Title 2 as we passed it. Section 286: speaker may be removed by 2/3 full membership Council. Does not say “shall” which makes mandatory. I don’t know where this goes after vote. I wish we had talked more to resolve. And I thot good leaders do that.
During chapter and planning meetings, there is always discussion over Speaker Naize.