Release Date: February 20, 2013
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
LUBICON LAKE NATION STANDING STRONG AGAINST FRAUDULENT ELECTION: DEMANDS ABORIGINAL AFFAIRS CEASE ASSIMILATION TACTICS IN NATION
Little Buffalo, AB - The Government of the Lubicon Lake Nation is a sovereign Nation within what is now Alberta, which has never signed treaty with Canada or the British crown ceding its rights over and title to its lands. The current Government of the Lubicon Lake Nation was formed as part of a custom resolution to previous disputes created by Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada (AAND-C) interference and the current governance has the written acknowledge support of the vast majority of Lubicon citizens. The Government of the Lubicon Lake Nation has not called, nor held an election and no changes have been made to the governance of our Nation.
The Government of the Lubicon Lake Nation has become aware of actions occurring at a non-Lubicon community on February 15, 2013 at a public hall in Cadotte Lake, Alberta which is being reported by some as a “Lubicon Election”. What has actually occurred is just another attempt by AAND-C to destabilize our community using an agent named Lorne Ternes who initially suggested his presence in the community was to “facilitate the leadership dispute”, he then caused the creation of a fraudulent Lubicon Lake Membership Society registered in Alberta using a handful of disgruntled non-resident Lubicons. This Alberta Society is not affiliated with the Lubicon Lake Nation in any way and the Society and its directors (who conveniently were also the supposedly elected council) have all been served with notices to cease and desist from the ongoing, illegal use of the Lubicon name. It should also be noted that some if not all of those same directors are employed by AAND-C through their Third Party Manager.
As with any sovereign Nation, in accordance with Lubicon laws, customs and traditions, Lubicon elections must be called by representatives of the Lubicon government. No Lubicon election has ever or will ever be held outside of the Lubicon Lake Nation territory and most certainly not in another First Nation’s community. The City of Edmonton would not allow their elections to be held in Calgary; we are no different. Some reports have suggested that the February 15 action which allowed Lubicon status card holders to “vote” even though they did not live in Lubicon territory was more appropriate as it allowed non-residents a voice in Lubicon governance. Lubicon laws, customs and traditions remain focussed, as they always have, on our inherent relationship to our lands. Consistent with this principle, our laws require that citizens be resident within Lubicon territory if they wish to vote in Lubicon elections. As our elections are not governed by the Indian Act, this requirement remains consistent with Canadian law, international law and the principles of self-determination. Would the City of Edmonton allow residents from Calgary to vote in their elections just because “they lived there once” or “they wanted to identify with Edmonton” as has been suggested this case.
Chief Bernard Ominayak in speaking to Lubicon citizens this morning said “AAND-C must respect our governing institutions and our Nationhood first and foremost as we are a sovereign Nation, any further interference will not be tolerated.” The results of the February 15 actions at Cadotte Lake, Alberta have no impact on the Lubicon Lake Nation; they are not legally binding upon our Nation or our government. Any actions taken by AAND-C in the Lubicon community whether recognizing, referring to or making use of the results of the February 15 actions will be resisted by the Lubicon people with any force necessary.
Contact Info: Garrett Tomlinson - Communications Coordinator
Lubicon Lake Nation
P.O. Box 6731 Stn. Main
Peace River, AB T8S 1S5
Office (780) 629-3945
Direct (780) 618-3794