Volume 1, Issue 17

$88,000 donated to Liberals by execs of companies in impact study: Liberal-linked firms did Hydro’s Great Whale impact report

Hydro-Quebec’s environmental impact report on the proposed Great Whale River Project was created largely by companies headed by Liberal Party donors, The Nation has learned. Of the 34 companies that conducted studies for the report, 15 are run by Liberal donors, or nearly one-half. In total, these donors gave $88,695 to ... read more ››

Air Creebec flying into the black ink

Things are starting to look up at Air Creebec. More natives have been hired. The management team has been restructured and perhaps most importantly, the Cree Nation’s airline company is making a profit for the first time in four and a half years. “AIR CREEBEC HAS been on the hot seat for ... read more ››

Brouillard gave PQ S400

Richard Brouillard, one of the top consultants working for the Cree economic entities, made a financial contribution to the Parti Quebecois in 1992, The Nation has learned. Brouillard, who lives in Val d’Or, gave $400 to the party’s Abitibi-East riding association, according to public records of political donations. Brouillard is the ... read more ››

Compensation sought for residential schools

Native children who were raped, beaten and sometimes tortured in residential schools should receive compensation, says Ovide Mercredi. The recently re-elected National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations said Canada and the churches which ran the schools should assume responsibility for what happened in the schools and the social problems ... read more ››

Cree Gathering plans set

The date and location of the Cree Nation Gathering are set—Sept. 13-16 in Old Nemaska Post. “The setting is important,” said Deputy Grand Chief Kenny Blacksmith. “It’s getting away from your conventional conference structures. It will be something more traditional.” Chiefs and regional Cree leaders met in Nemaska in mid-August to plan ... read more ››

Flying higher than an Icarus

The Music from the Legends Project I Am An Eagle Various Artists First Nations Music (P. O. Box 1180, 16 Fifth Ave., Sioux Lookout, Ont. P8T1B7) Move on over and crank up that sound. This album has something for everyone. Soul, blues, country, country rock and a native pride you just can’t hide. Native music is ... read more ››

Irwin coughs up cash

Ottawa will spend $11.4 million to clean up Pukatawagan s sewage-contaminated water. Indian Affairs Minister Ron Irwin made the announcement after visiting the community 200 km north of The Pas, Manitoba. Irwin’s visit followed a mass exodus of Pukatawagan residents prompted by a flurry of Hepatatis A cases caused by dirty ... read more ››

La Presse tells off Richard Le Hir

Richard Le Hir is in the news once again. In the Aug. 13 issue of La Presse, the newspaper’s chief editorialist, Alain Dubuc, wrote a scathing editorial making fun of the PQ star candidate, and calling him “intellectually undisciplined.” Dubuc was commenting on recent revelations that Le Hir was once a ... read more ››

Lawmakers okay peyote use

Native Americans are on their way to being able to legally use and carry peyote for ceremonial purposes. A bill protecting the religious use of peyote has passed the House of Representatives. Similar legislation is also before the U.S. Senate. Twenty eight states already permit the use of peyote by native ... read more ››

Leaving home

The summer season was coming to a close. I felt it in the coolness of the evenings and saw it in the light mist that hung over the bay as dawn crept over the forest which surrounded the village. Our long hours of daylight were shorter and fewer children came to ... read more ››

Looking at the options: One Chief’s vision

At a community meeting in Wemindji on Aug. 5, Chief Walter Hughboy made a proposal that surprised some, and worried others. He unveiled a plan to build five or six new mini hydro dams in the Maguatua River basin, and sell the excess power to Hydro-Quebec. He went on to criticize ... read more ››

Losing someone we love

In the memory of Thomas Blackned, who died on July 12, 1994, age 87 years old To all who have known him as a father, grandfather, dear friend and a well-known man in our community. Today as I stand before you it brings to my heart the memories of Thomas, our ... read more ››

Most natives unlikely to vote

Ho hum. That about sums up the attitude of many of the First Peoples living within Quebec’s current borderstoward the provincial election. “The elections? Which elections? It’s been a longtime since the elections were held [for Band Council],” was how Kahnawake Band Council member Billy Two Rivers put it when asked ... read more ››

Natives arrested at blockade

Five natives were arrested on Aug. 8 north of North Bay, Ont. for blocking a highway used by logging trucks and local residents. “This is an illegal arrest,” said Sherwood Becker, a member of the Temagami Nation and one of the protestors. “It’s our land.” The protestors were charged with mischief and ... read more ››

No one can predict anything

One night Philip [Awashish] and I recorded a long conservation with the three hunters. I asked how they felt when they heard that white men regarded the land on which they live as worthless and empty. “They are saying,” said Philip after a good deal of conversation, “that the white man’s ... read more ››

Report found problems in how Air Creebec used to be managed

AIR CREEBEC WAS alerted to many of its serious financial and managerial problems about a year and a half ago, when a consulting firm did a detailed analysis of the Cree airline. The consultants’ report was prepared for CreeCo. President Abel Kitchen by the firm Raymond, Chabot, Martin, Pare. A copy was ... read more ››

Sandy Lake rejects mining

For the second time in a month, the Sandy fake First Nation in northern Ontario has turned down a request from the Ontario government to discuss mining development on its traditional land. Sandy Lake told the Ontario Natural Resources Ministry it opposes a gold exploration project proposed by JVX Ltd., a ... read more ››

Still Flying High: Vern Cheechoo

I first heard Vern Cbeechoo on the Goose Wings album. He impressed me then and he impresses me still. I finally got a chance to catch up with this travelling man in Wemindji, where he performed some of his latest music at the 35th anniversary of the community’s move from Old ... read more ››

Suicide wave hits native town

A spate of suicides has hit a northwestern Ontario native community, prompting exasperation from the Chief over the community’s poor housing, lack of land and inadequate funds for a healing centre. Pikangikum Chief Gordon Peters accused Canada, Ontario and the Assembly of First Nations of abandoning his community. Most of Pikangikum’s 1,600 ... read more ››

To vote or not to vote

By the time enumeration period arrived a few days ago, the Quebec Director-General of Elections had recruited more than 20 Eeyouch enumerators to walk into our homes in order to register the population for the Sept. 12 provincial elections. An honourable mission, one might say, but yes, there is also a ... read more ››

Top 10 reasons for not voting in the provincial election

10. Mohawks will beat you up if you do. 9. Both parties are into the wet dream of Great Whale and NBR. 8. Romeo Saganash isn’t running for either party. 7. Two words: Le Hir. 6. You’re waiting for Billy and Walter’s Cree Beaver Party to run. 5. The two main leaders look ... read more ››

Wemindji dissidents write

The following anonymous letter was sent to The Nation from Wemindji: Chief Walter Hughboy calls for a General Meeting with his people in Wemindji on August 5, 1994 after numerous demands made by the people to address issues pertaining to irregularities at the Council level. But instead of Chief Hughboy addressing these ... read more ››

Wemindji First Nation meeting heats up

The Hughboy administration is under fire again. It happened at an August 5 Band meeting about new proposed mini-hydrodams and other matters pertaining to the interests of Wemindji residents. Walter Hughboy, the Chief, was proposing to create four or five more flow-of-the-river mini-dams. This would be in addition to the one existing ... read more ››

Who gave what and when

THE SNC-LAVALIN GROUP figures prominently in Hydro’s 5,000-page Great Whale impact report. The SNC-Lavalin Group is Canada’s largest engineering firm, and four of its subsidiaries did a total of 26 studies for the report. Among them is the company Lalonde Girouard Letendre, whose president, Claude Comtois, gave $13,800 to the Liberals. ... read more ››

Who was asleep at the switch?

One must wonder at times if the viligance of our leaders is sometimes relaxed in allowing the unthinkable to happen. Just because we can’t imagine it happening. What do I mean? I mean that having a Hydro-Quebec representive on many of the boards of Cree organizations, such as the Eeyou, Opimiscow or ... read more ››