Navajo Council’s Naabik’iyati Committee recommends Over-Ride of President Shelly’s veto of Navajo language fluency requirement to Council

Naabik'iyati Committee member/Council Delegate Leonard Tsosie had his Navajo language experts Dr. Lula Stago and Alden Thompson testify in support of proposed Council legislation to over-ride President Shelly's veto of Council amendments to election law regarding Navajo language fluency for presidential candidates. The Naabik'iyati Committee was meeting the Navajo Council chambers in Window Rock, Ariz., on Nov. 12, 2014. Photo by Marley Shebala. (If reusing photo, please provide proper photo credit.)

Naabik’iyati Committee member/Council Delegate Leonard Tsosie had his Navajo language experts Dr. Lula Stago and Alden Thompson testify in support of proposed Council legislation to over-ride President Shelly’s veto of Council amendments to election law regarding Navajo language fluency for presidential candidates. The Naabik’iyati Committee was meeting the Navajo Council chambers in Window Rock, Ariz., on Nov. 12, 2014. Photo by Marley Shebala. (If reusing photo, please provide proper photo credit.)

The sponsors of Over-Ride legislation Committee member/Council Delegate Leonard Tsosie and Duane Tsingine have their Navajo language experts speak. They are Dr. Lula Stago and Alden Thompson of Teesto, Ariz.

DR. LULA STAGO
if language law no longer serves purpose and is no longer effective then have we not fixed it. are you going to listen to the voices of the people or the law?
(Federal judge rules in BIA school authority case. JULY 30, 2003. A federal judge has ruled that Bureau of Indian Affairs schools that fall under the Tribally Controlled Schools Act must comply with tribal law.
U.S. District Judge Frederick Martone issued the decision July 15, The Gallup Independent reported. He sided with Lula Mae Stago, the former executive director of the Wide Ruins Community School on the Navajo Nation, who sued after being passed over for a job.
Stago was supported by Department of Justice attorneys in the case. The Navajo Nation Department of Justice had sided against Stago.)

NAABI COMMITTEE MEBMER/DELEGATE LEONARD TSOSIE
Navajo people started anaylyzing Supreme Court opinion and they are saying that Supreme Court’s definition of Navajo language fluency is wrong. I wanted the Naabik’iyati Committee to hear Dr. Stago and Alden Thompson, Teesto
I believe we will not violate law. And the Supreme Court should only answer questions before them instead of sending subtle messages to the Council.
And you could have different levels of fluency and former interim President Leonard Haskie is advanced fluency. I’m moderate fluency. and the supreme court didn’t analyze that. and so CO-47-14 would set the standard.
in the people’s vote, they look at future of children, Navajo land. Who will we select to bring security to land, culture, people. that is decision of people and they made known with their votes. over 9,000 in primary election and probably over 10,000 votes in general election disenfranchised. so over-ride would go to healing. legislative branch has right to do this.

COMMITTEE CHAIRPERSON LORENZO BATES
The vote is 12 in favor, 5 opposed. Over-ride legislation now moves to Council. But the main vote is in Council, where it require simple majority.

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