Taylor Bachrach (left) and Nathan Cullen (right) pictured at Bachrach’s Smithers campaign office opening on Sept. 5. Bachrach is taking over Cullen’s place as the NDP candidate for Skeena-Bulkley Valley. (Trevor Hewitt photo)

Northern B.C. MP calls on Trudeau to meet with Indigenous group in middle of CGL dispute

The federal government maintains the issue is solely under provincial jurisdiction

Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP Taylor Bachrach might not have sat in Parliament long, but already he’s asking some pretty big questions.

During the Indigenous Affairs portion of oral question period on Feb. 5, Bachrach put the question to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as to why he has hasn’t been to Wet’suwet’en territory to meet with the hereditary chiefs.

“The issues surrounding Coastal GasLink and the Wet’suwet’en have been deeply divisive for communities in my riding,” said Bachrach, noting he did not want to see a repeat of the Jan. 7, 2019 enforcement of a previous injunction related to the matter.

The hereditary chiefs have stated on numerous occasions they wish to meet with Trudeau.

“The government’s promises of reconciliation are on the line, and the chiefs have asked to meet with the Prime Minister. Why is he refusing to meet with them?” Bachrach asked Trudeau.

READ MORE: Hereditary Chiefs say CGL asked B.C. to drop talks after making clear no access would be granted

In his response, Trudeau once again stressed the federal position that this is an issue of provincial jurisdiction.

He also pointed to the recent appointment of former Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP Nathan Cullen by the Province to engage in talks with the Wet’suwet’en.

“We have full confidence in the NDP government in British Columbia to move forward in the correct way,” said Trudeau. “Why do the NDP members in the House not have the same confidence in the NDP government of British Columbia?”

He added that the Liberal government is committed to renewing its relationship with Indigenous people and will continue to engage with leaders across the country.

But for hereditary chief Na’Moks (John Ridsdale), those words aren’t enough. Na’Moks says if Trudeau really means what he is saying it’s important for him to visit with the hereditary chiefs.

“When they say that they’re going to have the best relationship with Indigenous people and then they ignore the Indigenous people, that is not fair, that is not proper and it most certainly is not respectful,” said Na’Moks.

“He needs to show respect to the Indigenous people. When we are changing the history of this country the Prime Minister should be here to listen to us.”



trevor.hewitt@interior-news.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Cloverdale high school teacher chats about teaching and life during the COVID-19 crisis

Surrey’s Walter van Halst sits down for an informal ‘virtual’ coffee to discuss education’s current new reality

Urban Safari Rescue Society starts online video presentations

Animal shelter struggling to stay afloat during pandemic

IHIT identifies victim in Surrey shooting homicide

Pritpal Singh, 21, was shot and killed outside of a Surrey home, police say

33-storey Whalley highrise, first of three phases, moves to public hearing

Councillors raise concerns about school overcrowding, green roofs

COVID-19 death toll reaches 50 in B.C., while daily case count steadies

B.C. records 34 new cases in the province, bringing total active confirmed cases to 462

Cancellations of plant orders prompt advent of pop-up garden shops

A Langley nursery is partnering with local eateries to sell 40 acres of veggie plants and flowers

B.C. unveils $5M for mental health supports during the COVID-19 pandemic

Will include virtual clinics and resources for British Columbians, including front-line workers

B.C.’s COVID-19 rent supplement starts taking applications

$300 to $500 to landlords for April, May and June if eligible

Reality TV show about bodybuilders still filming in Okanagan, amid COVID-19

Five bodybuilders from across the country flew to Kelowna to move into a house for a reality TV show

B.C.’s top doctor details prescription for safe long weekend

Yes, it includes hosting an online cooking show

BC SPCA seeks help for abandoned German shepherd puppies

Donations have ‘petered out’ as doors are closed due to COVID-19

Researchers to study whether plasma of recovered patients can treat COVID-19

Plasma is the liquid portion of the blood that contains the antibodies that protect against illness

Most Read