The Village of Richmound’s battle with an unwelcome guest continues.

The small community, situated south of Leader, has been stressed since Romana Didulo and her followers moved into the former Richmound School property in Sept. of 2023.

Over the last eight months, the situation has become more strenuous, after residents have held protests, and Didulo and her followers have continued their presence in the village.

Recently, tensions have been renewed as Didulo has become invested in a local property. The Richmound Campsite, which rests at the end of Centre Street, has been allegedly co-signed for ownership by up to 12 members of Didulo's people.

Brad Miller, mayor of the Village of Richmound, says that this does grant them the ability to vote within the municipality, but does not grant them access to sit on council.

"They're on the land title," said Miller. "I talked to SUMA and they could never take over the municipality. They could vote, but they could never sit on the board or hold a council seat or the mayoral seat."

This issue of the outsiders deepening their position in Richmound has led to some individuals leaving town, be that for work elsewhere, or outright fleeing.

"I think maybe one person fled," said Miller. "If you can actually believe that the houses are going up for sale, and they're the nicer houses and are getting sold like probably within a week or two."

These houses have not been, to the knowledge of Miller, purchased by anyone backing Didulo.

The trouble for the Village of Richmound continues to mount, as they lost $4,000 to legal fees. Richmound had hired a lawyer to draft some legal documents, in an effort to persuade a judge to offer them a warrant for the purpose of inspecting the former school building. Miller suspects that Didulo has been illegally renovating and utilizing the structure as a living space, possibly using sewer and gas they are not paying taxes for.

"The judge turned around and said that the lawyer never put something in where we were a little late," said Miller. "They turned us down and that really stuck a knife into our belly."

What with the slowly growing influence of Didulo, the Village of Richmound is relying on their resilience as a community, to remain undeterred by the harassment they have received in the form of 'royal decrees' from Didulo, which have called for locals to be publicly executed.

"We don't know where to turn because the more money you spend, then the majority of the people think we're spending too much," said Miller. "Now we don't know which way to turn."

Previously, the RCMP had stationed a temporary base in the village. This measure was taken amid many complaints of harassment and fear by residents. The RCMP has since closed up the temporary base, leaving Richmound once again without immediate police presence. The closest RCMP detachment is in Leader.