AMC bars news media from annual general meeting

APTN obtained a copy of the agenda of AMC’s annual general meeting.

The Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs is holding its annual general meeting behind closed doors this week.

The two-day meeting has been open to news organizations in the past.

But Wednesday a sign was taped to the door barring reporters from entering.

AMC spokesman Andrew Thunder denied an APTN News reporter entry to the meeting.

He said AMC would broadcast a livestream of the proceedings instead.

Then he followed up with an email saying a video of the event would be posted to AMC’s Youtube channel later.

Signs on the door outside AMC’s annual general meeting (Beverly Andrews/APTN)

The meeting is being held at South Beach Casino & Resort on the Brokenhead Ojibwe Nation, about 30 minutes drive northwest of Winnipeg.

The group, which represents 62 First Nations in the province, has been weathering a three-week scandal involving its Grand Chief Arlen Dumas.

Dumas denied allegations last month he sent inappropriate texts to a 20-year-old woman.

AMC said Dumas would take a leave of absence to undergo counselling and professional sensitivity training to change his communication style.

But a photo tweeted by AMC Wednesday morning appeared to show Dumas leading the grand entry parade at the meeting in Brokenhead.

Two provincial Indigenous politicians – Judy Klassen (Lib.) and Wab Kinew (NDP) – are also in the photo.

An agenda of the meeting, a copy of which was obtained by APTN, still lists Sheldon Kent as acting grand chief.

APTN requested an interview with Kent.

More to come.

With files from Beverly Andrews

Online Journalist / Winnipeg

Award-winning reporter Kathleen Martens covers western and northern Canada for A veteran of the Brandon Sun, Sun Media and APTN Investigates, she is based in APTN’s head office, specializing in stories about property, women’s rights and community.