OTTAWA, Sept. 19 /CNW Telbec/ - Elections for President of the Métis
National Council (MNC) will take place on October 13 - 14, 2007 in Ottawa as
proposed by four of the five members of the MNC Board of Governors, despite
the interventions by former MNC President Clem Chartier and the President of
the Manitoba Métis Federation (MMF), Chartier's only supporter on the MNC
Board of Governors.
The Ontario Superior Court approved the order, which was jointly
requested by all parties in the dispute. The Order upholds the provisions of
the MNC By-laws concerning the selection of delegates. Mr. Chartier and
Mr. Chartrand dropped their attempt to have the court alter the By-laws. The
Order also appoints MNC Chief Administrative Officer, Dale LeClair to run the
day-to-day operations of the MNC until the holding of the elections.
"We deplore the fact that this decision had to be taken by a court when
we, the leaders of the Métis Nation, had set the dates for this election a few
weeks ago on July 31st, 2007," said Métis Nation British Columbia President
Bruce Dumont. "This whole needless costly exercise led by the former MNC
President and his only supporter among the MNC Board of Governors was a
colossal waste of time, energy and money."
Audrey Poitras, President of the Métis Nation of Alberta said, "I am
relieved that we can go ahead with our Elections for MNC President but I
really question why it is that we had to go through all of this when we had
set the stage for this to happen at our Board of Governors Meeting six weeks
ago. Nothing has been accomplished by this needless court case other than some
publicity for some people and a huge cost to the Métis Nation."
"This whole court action was an incredible waste of time and financial
resources that have taken away from the fight for our rights, including our
land rights," said Métis Nation - Saskatchewan President Robert Doucette. "I
cannot understand why former MNC President Clem Chartier and his only
supporter on the MNC Board of Governors would have caused us to spend tens of
thousands of dollars in this useless court case instead of putting that money
into fighting our land claims and hunting rights cases in Saskatchewan and
elsewhere in the Métis Nation."
"It is astonishing to see that the MNC was taken to court by its former
President and his only supporter on the MNC Board of Governors and that its'
four other governing members would have to defend the MNC and the rights of
the Métis people to make its own decisions according to its own laws," said
Métis Nation of Ontario President Tony Belcourt. "This was a shameful, costly
and needless act which is inexcusable."
The Order by the Superior Court of Ontario was by consent of both the
Plaintiffs (Chartier/MMF) and the Defendants
(MNC/Dumont/Poitras/Doucette/Belcourt). The Court did not choose sides, rather
it ordered that which was agreed to by both parties in negotiations. For the
full text of the Order, see the following websites:
For further information:
For further information: Bruce Dumont, MNBC, (604) 219-0157; Audrey
Poitras, MNA, (780) 490-8188; Robert Doucette, MN-S, (306) 343-8285; Tony
Belcourt, MNO, (613) 791-5056