My Canada includes rights of Indigenous Peoples.
Love it or leave it! Peace.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Canada imposed its government on Indigenous community: Barriere Lake 2007 In the early 1900's Canada displaced by domestic law and by force the traditional Indigenous governing Councils across Canada. Six Nations traditional Chiefs and Clan Mothers were evicted from the Council House by RCMP at gunpoint in 1924, and they had to do it again in 1959. Traditional governing councils continued 'underground' in some places, and in some places, like Barriere Lake PQ, they stayed under the government's radar. Until 2007, that is, when the Government of Canada decided they had caused enough disruption to 'business' on their land, and removed the Chief and Council and parachuted new people in to 'govern'. This is Canada's modus operandi - if they don't allow us to steal the resources and plunder their land, they are replaced with someone who will. Welcome to 1908 ... er ... 2008.


We’re here to demand the minister live up to the promise that he made to us,” said former chief Jean-Morice Matchewan. “They never kept one promise that they made to us,” he continued.

The former chief led the community in protest all through the late 1980s and early 1990s as the reserve prevented clear-cutting on its land and forced the government to sign a monumental agreement in 1991. Last September Matchewan was forced to step down due to charges laid against him as police found a weapon in his vehicle during hunting season. Current Acting Chief Nottoway alleges this was a set up for a Securite Quebec-backed coup d’etat which took place on the reserve last March.

One of the last reserves in Canada to follow a traditional form of governance, the Algonquins of Barriere Lake are also one of the last to maintain their traditional language. In March the government imposed the band council system on the reserve and appointed Casey Ratt as the chief. Nottoway says Ratt doesn’t actually live on the reserve. “He has an apartment in Val D’or… but he’s never had a house in our community.”

Matchewan called for the government to “review its decision to impose the Chief and Counsel. No government is allowed to overthrow another government. That’s why we’re here, to straighten out this mess that they’ve created.”

“The minority faction represents about 20% of the community,” explained Maggie Shreiner, “whereas 80% of the community supports the traditional leadership of Barriere Lake. It’s been very divisive in the community.”

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My Canada includes rights of Indigenous Peoples.

Two Row Wampum Treaty

Two Row Wampum Treaty
"It is said that, each nation shall stay in their own vessels, and travel the river side by side. Further, it is said, that neither nation will try to steer the vessel of the other." This is a treaty among Indigenous Nations, and with Canada. This is the true nature of our relationships with Indigenous Nations of 'Kanata'.