Richard Brouillard is fighting back against his critics.

He has written a letter to the chair of the Board of Compensation, Rod Pachano, defending himself against allegations of conflict-of-interest.

Three CRA representatives to the Board of Compensation, Bill Namagoose, Matthew Swallow and Eddy Diamond, made the allegations in a letter to Rod Pachano dated March 29. Their letter said Brouillard is in a conflict-of-interest because he is both the controller of the Board of Compensation and a consultant to Servinor. Servinor has borrowed millions of dollars from the Board of Compensation’s cash-management system. The letter went on to say Brouillard should be removed from his job as the board’s controller.

The Nation has obtained a copy of Brouillard’s response. In his response, Brouillard calls Namagoose, Swallow and Diamond’s letter “insulting, reprehensible and unprofessional.”

In an interview with The Nation about the affair, Brouillard said he has done nothing wrong. He said he was asked by Crees themselves to hold his various positions.

“First of all, for the last four years since I was asked to look into the affairs of the Board of Compensation on a part-time basis, I’ve been asked to look at a lot of the files of CreeCo. itself and its subsidiaries. The point most of the time being asked by the people on the different boards themselves,” he said.

“And the basis is, I guess, very simple. If there’s a problem in a subsidiary and I can help in solving with it, that would help the subsidiary, and if it helps the subsidiary, it helps the owner,” said Brouillard.

“So the conflict-of-interest was never seen. This is a new invention by these people for reasons that I still haven’t understood. I still don’t understand where and how they can get such reasoning.”

Brouillard’s letter goes through 14 points to explain his role as one of the top advisors to the Cree entities.

He says the cash-management system has saved money for Cree companies and increased their productivity. He also writes that the system’s operations have always been disclosed to the Board of Compensation’s members. The method of reporting did change, but the information was always available. “There has been nothing hidden nor secret,” he writes. “All rules in place as to the use of the Cash Management System were followed.”

An example, says Brouillard, was the refusal to introduce money-losing Air Creebec into the cash-management system. “Any individual who is in attendance at the meetings is well aware of the detailed discussion which takes place,” he adds.

Brouillard goes on to acknowledge the difficulties in dealing with the social, political and business factors in the Cree world. But he says Servinor was researched by outside consultants to determine its viability. The problem with Servinor is that Cree merchants were expected to start dealing with the new Cree food wholesaler, but they haven’t come around. On numerous occasions, he says both he and Rod Pachano expressed concern to the Board of Compensation about Servinor’s growing use of the cash-management system.

Brouillard finishes off his response by saying the letter from Namagoose, Swallow and Diamond was “biased,” “misleading” and “presented in such a way as to cause prejudice.” Brouillard concludes by writing: “The widespread diffision of this letter and its contents are compelling reasons for me to consider my position and options since this letter is hanning my reputation by willfully ingnoring and twisting facts. I presume others, such as yourself [board chair Rod Pachano], who are referred to by implication in the letter, will be doing the same.”

Our full interview with Richard Broulliard will appear in our next issue.