Treaty 8 Chiefs Return Premier’s “Stake in the Peace” & cheque over broken promises

(Victoria, January 26, 2018) In a public ceremony on the Legislature lawn today, Treaty 8 Chiefs returned three “Stakes in the Peace” inscribed with the names of Premier John Horgan and Ministers George Heyman and Lana Popham.

“The stakes are symbols of respect for Treaty 8 and support for all who call Peace Valley home. Horgan, Heyman and Popham have betrayed their commitment to us and dishonoured their election promises. We are placing the stakes here at the Legislature as a warning to all British Columbians: voter beware,” said Chief Roland Willson of West Moberly First Nation.

During the election campaign, Horgan, Heyman and Popham had their names inscribed on yellow “Stakes in the Peace” and planted on Ken and Arlene Boons’ property, along with more than seven hundred other B.C. residents who donated to the Treaty 8 nations’ legal expenses fund to fight Site C.

“These stakes could have been a proud legacy – something to show your children and grandchildren: I saved the Peace valley. Instead, you chose to destroy a culture, destroy a valley and saddle all British Columbians with a crippling debt that will be carried down through generations,” said Chief Lynette Tsakoza of Prophet River First Nation.

“The cumulative impacts from this destructive dam are an unacceptable infringement on the rights of Treaty 8 Nations, and will be irreversible. Premier Horgan’s approval of this project is in stark opposition to his simultaneous attempt to renew the province’s relationship with Indigenous peoples, a central election promise of the BCNDP Government. Returning the stakes to these fair-weather politicians is a strong symbol that we won’t back down from this fight against Site C,” stated Chief Bob Chamberlin, Vice President of the Union of BC Indian Chiefs.

The Chiefs also returned $300 in donations by the ministers to the two First Nations’ legal action against Site C, made during the election campaign.

“Here’s your money back. You’ll need every penny to pay for the expensive folly that you’ve imposed on this province,” said Chief Willson.

Earlier in January, West Moberly and Prophet River First Nations launched civil actions for treaty infringement and injunctions to stop Site C.