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Longtime northern politician Ludy Pudluk (right) received the Order of Nunavut from territorial commissioner Nellie Kusugak.

Michel Albert/The Canadian Press

A 20-year Northern politician who was instrumental in the movement that led to the creation of Nunavut has died.

Ludy Pudluk, who was 76, died in hospital in Iqaluit on Monday following a long illness.

He represented the communities of the High Arctic in the Northwest Territories Legislature from 1975 to 1995.

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Mr. Pudluk, who was originally from the Pond Inlet area in what would become Nunavut, spent most of his life in Resolute after he was relocated there by the Canadian government in the 1950s along with other Inuit.

He served as Resolute’s mayor after he left territorial politics and was part of several local organizations, although he moved back to Pond Inlet in his later years.

He was awarded the Order of Nunavut in May, 2018.

Mr. Pudluk was predeceased by his wife, the former Dora Echalook, in 2011. He leaves a large extended family.

A statement from the speakers of both the Northwest Territories and Nunavut legislatures offered condolences to his friends, families and former colleagues.

“Mr. Pudluk was a dedicated spokesperson for the North, was a strong climate-change activist and made significant contributions to the creation of Nunavut,” Northwest Territories Speaker Jackson Lafferty said in the statement.

Speaker Simeon Mikkungwak in Nunavut added: “Ludy Pudluk received the Order of Nunavut last year in recognition of his lifetime of public service.”

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