What you read on Nunatsiaqonline.ca from Jan. 1 to Jan. 8
Death of Nunavut artist Tim Pitsiulak leads the week's five most-read stories
News about events in late December led the top five most-read stories during the first week of 2017 on Nunatsiaqonline.ca.
A story on the unexpected death of Nunavut artist Tim Pitsiulak, 49, Dec. 19 was the most-read story of the new year’s first week, according to Google Analytics, which tracks online traffic on our website.
According to reports, Pitsiulak picked up the phone Dec. 19 to call his long-time art studio, Cape Dorset’s West Baffin Eskimo Co-operative.
He spoke to his friend, cousin and co-op studio manager Joemie Takpaungi; Pitsiulak was sick at home and needed some drawing paper.
“He called me telling me that he has pneumonia and that he will send one of his sons to pick up a drawing paper,” Takpaungi recalled.
That was the last time Takpaungi spoke to his cousin and friend. Four days later, on Dec. 23, Pitsiulak died of the severe lung infection. He was only 49.
His sudden death sent shock waves through the community and the wider world of Inuit art. You can read more about the reaction to Pitsiulak’s death here.
The second most-read story of the week looked at the re-opening of the trial of former Sanikiluaq teacher Johnny Meeko to allow for the introduction of new evidence,
This followed a Dec. 22 ruling by Justice Neil Sharkey at the Nunavut Court of Justice in Iqaluit, when Sharkey approved an application from Meeko’s defence lawyer, James Morton, to re-open the case.
The Nunavut Crown prosecutor’s office consented to the application.
“The new information is a letter received by defence counsel in which an individual alleges being asked to falsely claim sexual abuse by Johnny Meeko. The purpose of the falsehood, according to this individual, was to receive money,” the application said.
You can read more here.
And, with the Jan. 2 launch of a refurbished Boeing 737-300 combi-jet on its Iqaluit-Ottawa route, Canadian North Inc. signalled that despite the end of codeshare, they’re in Nunavut’s Qikiqtani region to stay.
The third-most read story of the week looked at an aircraft the airline first intended to start using on its Iqaluit-Ottawa service in March 2017.
But after First Air announced its codeshare pullout this past November, Canadian North decided to bring the new aircraft into the Baffin region earlier.
“So we have announced that we’re in the Baffin to stay. We’re not pulling back because of that change,” said Lorraine Bonner, Canadian North’s vice president of scheduled services.
Also among the top five stories: our “stars” and “duds” reviews of the year.
“For some of us, the year 2016 was filled with rewarding moments. For others it was just a so-so year and for some it was a year of heartbreak. But amidst all that, there were people and institutions that shone—giving us hope for the future.”
The top star: ITK President Natan Obed, chosen in the fall of 2015 to serve as president of Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, who represents a new style of educated Inuit leadership.
To see the other stars of 2016, go here.
“But there were others who disappointed us,” said a story on 2016’s duds, led by Nunavut MP Hunter Tootoo, “who turned a promising career as a federal Liberal cabinet minister into a smoking ruin last spring.” You can read the entire list of 2016’s duds here.
Other year-end stories included:
• top 10 online stories of 2016; and,