APTN National News
Gov-General David Johnston refused to answer questions on Attawapiskat Chief Theresa Spence Tuesday when approached by reporters asking if he was going to meet with the chief who is now in her eighth day of a hunger strike.
Johnston just smiled as APTN National News reporter Annette Francis asked was it not his duty as a representative of the Queen to meet with Spence.
“As a representative of the Crown isn’t it incumbent upon you to meet with Chief Theresa Spence?” Johnston was asked, twice.
Spence is on a hunger strike until there is a meeting between Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Johnston and First Nations leaders to discuss treaty rights that she says are being violated by the federal government.
APTN National News first approached Johnston immediately after a photo-opportunity at Ottawa’s City Hall where Johnston was celebrating the renaming of a park – the Diamond Jubilee Park – that used to be named the Findlay Creek Community Park.
He didn’t say anything when asked the question and smiled as people approached him. His media handlers said beforehand he would not be taking questions.
As he slowly made his way across the room APTN asked him again and his media handlers grabbed one reporter by her shoulder, twice, trying to pull her out of the way.
Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson also ran interference to move reporters out of the way for Johnston.
“He is here for a photo-opp,” said Watson.
Spence is staying in a teepee on Victoria Island that is just a few hundred metres from Parliament Hill and the Supreme Court of Canada.