An event being hosted by the Metis National Council (MNC) in an effort “to rally all patriots of the Metis Nation” in defence of the homeland could be thinly attended.
The Metis Nation Gathering on Identity, Citizenship and Homeland is set to take place in Saskatoon on March 9 and 10.
The gathering comes at a time of infighting within the MNC that includes the current suspension of the Metis Nation of Ontario (MNO).
The decision by MNC to suspend MNO came on the heels of a “historic” tri-council meetings between MNO and Metis Nation of Alberta and Metis Nation of Saskatchewan where a resolution was passed calling for “accountability and transparency” from the MNC.
The MNO was previously on a one-year suspension over concerns about a failure to comply with citizenship rules that MNC believes will lead to the MNO becoming “the gateway for a new eastern invasion.”
Now, the tri-council has announced its own national conference on Metis self-government, in the Ottawa area on the exact same dates as the MNC event in Saskatoon.
“It just shows you that it’s hypocrisy, it’s a fallacy of statements that they’re making in the media that they don’t really want a meeting with the people,” says Manitoba Metis Federation President David Chartrand, who is also acting as the national spokesperson for MNC.
Chartrand, in an upcoming episode of Face to Face, says he had hoped the meeting in Saskatoon would be an opportunity for everyone to come together and air their concerns, defend their positions and come to a compromise.
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A recently completed audit of MNCs finances are also expected to be presented at the meeting in Saskatoon.
“They want to have their own way of doing things just as three presidents,” says Chartrand.
Over the past month, APTN News has made numerous interview requests to MNS President Glen McCallum, MNA President Audrey Poitras and MNO President Margaret Froh.
Those requests have either been declined or ignored.
(‘I think they have to go back and reflect their own democracy,’ says David Chartrand, middle, of the other Metis organizations. Photo: APTN)
According to Chartrand, the three presidents “believe they are not responsible or accountable to others.”
“I think they have to go back and reflect their own democracy,” Chartrand says on the Feb. 25 episode of Face to Face that focuses on the current infighting at MNC.
In April, the MNC is expected to hold its annual general assembly in Winnipeg.
For the first time in two decades, a new president will be elected after long-time leader Clement Chartier announced he would not be seeking re-election.
Chartrand, who says he isn’t going to run for president of MNC, wonders if the presidents of MNS and MNA will attend the AGA.
The MNO will not be allowed to participate in the AGA until the MNC board of governors can meet to discuss the ongoing suspension.
“Are we going to have some kind of crazy show happening at our assembly? We’re not going to have people screaming and yelling.
“We’re leaders, we have to act like leaders,” says Chartrand.