OTTAWA, Nov. 23, 2011 /CNW/ - In response to today's introduction of
legislation that would require First Nation Chiefs and councilors to
make public their salaries and expenses, Assembly of First Nations
(AFN) National Chief Shawn A-in-chut Atleo expressed the urgent need to
move forward on First Nation plans and priorities that will achieve
real change for First Nation governments, citizens and communities.
"First Nations support and are committed to the principles of
accountability and transparency to our citizens. We do not support
unilateralism that further entrenches us in a system that doesn't work
for our people or Canada," said AFN National Chief Shawn Atleo. "First
Nations want to work together with government to address the real
issues and achieve real change based on need. We must transform the
relationship to one that is based on respect for First Nation rights,
jurisdiction and Treaties and jointly develop an approach to achieving
real accountability and efficiency of all governments. This is the way
forward to strengthen First Nations' capacity to take greater
responsibility and control over the decisions that impact the lives of
our citizens and the future of our communities.
Last December, AFN Chiefs-in-Assembly unanimously passed a resolution
reaffirming their commitment to maintaining transparent and accountable
decision-making structures in their communities. The resolution also
confirmed that the primary reporting and accountability relationship is
to their citizens, and committed to designing mechanisms to ensure open
and informed involvement in community decision-making.
First Nation plans to transform the relationship and achieve real change
are clearly set out in the AFN federal pre-budget submission and a
recent presentation to the House of Commons Standing Committee on
Building on its pre-budget submission, AFN today released a discussion
paper called "Delivering Fairness, Stability and Results: Transforming Fiscal and Accountability relationships between First
Nation Governments and the Government of Canada" which outlines
specific principles required to transform the fiscal relationship
reflecting First Nation led initiatives.
"First Nations are advancing plans based on our rights and the clear
principles of accountability, transparency and achieving mutual
standards," said National Chief Atleo. "Our people are saying that
action is needed now and that the government must heed the advice of
the former Auditor General Sheila Fraser to fundamentally transform the
current systemic barriers to progress."
The Assembly of First Nations is the national organization representing
First Nations citizens in Canada. Follow National Chief Atleo and AFN
on Twitter @NCAtleo, @AFN_Updates, @AFN_Comms.
SOURCE ASSEMBLY OF FIRST NATIONS
For further information:
Jenna Young, Assembly of First Nations Communications Officer
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Alain Garon, Assembly of First Nations Bilingual Communications Officer
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