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Kwikwetlem chief should return money and apologize
When Kwikwetlem First Nation chief Ron Giesbrecht released the media statement saying he wouldn’t resign, he deceived everyone by saying only four members opposed his decisions. He did not include the members who would not respond without first having their questions answered. He also informed only his supporters of the opportunity to release YouTube statements about their view of what he has done.
I am extremely concerned as to why the decision for his contract bonus was not put to a membership vote as every decision is in the band. He may have a non-disclosure agreement with the province, but that does not apply to the transparency he owes to his own people.
To set the record straight, many members have helped this nation get to the point we are at today — not just one person. It was the dedication of the previous chiefs and councils who laid the groundwork for the success this nation has had within the last 20 years.
Many of the members who have long lived here on the reserve have endured many interviews to discuss our knowledge of the past. It is not easy to re-live the times of yesterday, but we do so to see a change for our children. These interviews are to remember our culture and protect what we hold dear in our territory.
It is sad to see this chief take away from not only the elders who have lived through so much but also the young ones we fight for everyday who will need to continue on with the efforts we have begun.
I am deeply appalled by what has happened and many of the things I have heard has left me in awe of the arrogance I see. We were taught that as a chief and council you do not accept praise — or money — for something that is expected of you, which is to look out for one another and do what is right for everyone.
Those who oppose him — and rightly so — stand by our decision to see him return the money to the taxpayers and resign with an apology not only to our nation, but the nation of Canada as well.
Member of Kwikwetlem First Nations