Cardinal Communications, Inc.

December 10, 2008 23:59 ET

No crisis in Barriere Lake - New Chief and Council call for respect of the people's choice

OTTAWA, Dec. 10 - The new Chief of Barriere Lake, Casey
Ratt, is meeting with other First Nations leaders in Ottawa this week to
clarify the situation in his community and to explain that there is no
leadership crisis. Specifically, he is asking that the legitimate decision
made by the people of Barriere Lake be respected. "A new Council has been
selected in compliance with the Customary Code. This Council has the support
of the vast majority of the population, except for the former council members
who are not happy with the decision made by our people. It is time for them to
accept the fact, and for others to respect the people's choice," said Chief
Casey Ratt, in Ottawa for the Special Chiefs Assembly of the Assembly of First
Nations (AFN).
The new Council is now taking important steps to ensure that the Barriere
Lake First Nation's interests and future aspirations are taken seriously. "We
were selected because we were entrusted to give power back to our people,"
said Chief Ratt. "We will uphold this responsibility with great honour." The
Council is considering legal action against the former council members and
their supporters who refuse to accept the decision and are trying to create
the false impression of a crisis. "Let's be clear," said Chief Ratt. "The
leadership issue was resolved months ago. There is no crisis. All that we have
is a small group of protestors waging a communications and PR campaign against
the new Council."
The new Council is comprised of Chief Casey Ratt and four Councillors:
Donat Thusky, Roger Jerome, Wayne Papatie, and Ricky Decoursay. The Elders who
presided over the selection recognized that the majority of the Algonquins of
Barriere Lake First Nation belong to a young and ambitious generation who are
prepared to develop into great builders and leaders of the Algonquin Nation.
With the guidance of the Elders, the new Chief and Council will carry out the
duties and responsibilities as stated in the Mitchikanibikok Inik Anishnabe
Onakinakewin. The Council is already working hard to implement changes that
will result in tangible progress to empower and restore the dignity of their
First Nation.

Contact Information

  • Chief Casey Ratt, Cell: (819) 856-8541;
    Christal Ratt, Cell: (613) 222-2357