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Navajo Justices Rule in President-Leave Case

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Justices decide that Tribal Council’s action to put Navajo Nation President Joe Shirley on paid leave is invalid

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. — Navajo Supreme Court justices have ruled that an action by the Tribal Council to place President Joe Shirley on paid leave is invalid.

 Tribal lawmakers voted in late October to place Shirley on leave over so-far unsubstantiated allegations of unethical and illegal conduct.

 Shirley challenged the measure and a tribal judge ruled that the council acted outside its authority in placing Shirley on leave.

 An appeal to the tribe’s high court followed. The justices said Friday that the council misused emergency legislation in taking the action and failed to involve the public through hearings.

 They say Shirley is an employee of the Navajo people and not the council.


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