MoCreebec will not challenge the results of last year’s Grand Council election after all. As the Nation reported last November, the Quebec Cree community living in northern Ontario was considering launching a court challenge after their members were not offered an opportunity to participate in the vote that narrowly reelected Grand Chief Ted Moses.
Now, after much debate and legal advice, MoCreebec has decided not to pursue a specific challenge in the courts. Instead, they are considering challenging section 3.2.7 of the James Bay and Northern Quebec Agreement, which states the eligibility requirements for participation as part of the James Bay Cree nation.
One of the specifics is that if one has been absent for 10 years from the territory, they are no longer eligible to participate.
MoCreebec Chief Randy Kapashesit says this clause is unconstitutional and would like to challenge the interpretation of the section.
“We have given them plenty of time and opportunity to see our point of view,” said Kapashesit of the 20-year-disagreement, “but there has been no willingness to go down that road.”
Adds Kapashesit, “At this point we have not filed anything, we are still working out the finer details.”
The 525 members of Mocreebec live in Moose Factory and Moosonee with no distinction as a band and no reserve. They do have a chief and council, with their own constitution, their own membership and their own “creative style” of governing that is reflective of the Cree traditions.