STATEMENT OF THE BC REGIONAL CHIEF
STOP THE ENBRIDGE NORTH GATEWAY PIPELINE:
March and Rally for Joint Review Panel Hearing
Dakelth Territory (Prince George, BC) – July 9, 2012
On behalf of the First Nations of British Columbia, I want to acknowledge and thank each of you for making the personal commitment to draw attention to what is fast becoming the biggest issue of our day – the transport of bitumen by pipeline across our unceded ancestral lands and by tankers through our pristine waters. As Indigenous peoples, we have an obligation to protect our territories for our future generations. Notwithstanding anything Enbridge might say, the vast majority of our peoples do not support the Northern Gateway Pipeline proposal.
In the past, our Indigenous voice and the voice of reason may have been muted. This is no longer the case. We have fought hard for our survival and for our legal and political rights. Our peoples all across Canada are working together to re-build our governments, to protect our lands and to take back control of our lives. We have a voice. It must and will be heard. We will prevail. Our Nations are supported by many other Canadians who are as concerned for their future as we are for our own.
Decisions to proceed with major developments that do not take into account our voice will be challenged both in court and in the court of public opinion, which is becoming louder and stronger day by day. There is simply too much at stake.
All of us have our role to play in this fight to ensure a sustainable future. As the Regional Chief and on behalf of the BC Assembly of First Nations, we will be there with you every step of the way. We are with you, if not in person here today, in spirit and in solidarity. Ultimately our cause, as just, will succeed.
BRITISH COLUMBIA ASSEMBLY OF FIRST NATIONS,