OHSWEKEN — Six Nations of the Grand River’s 58th General Council has had a busy first month as they confront major contentious community issues and engage in extensive orientation phase of the community’s committees and departments.
CHANGES TO COMMITTEES
The orientation has been extensive — with the internal departments portion now complete and external committees now under review through to the end of this week.
Candace Lickers, SNGR’s Communications Officer says some of the changes include the dissolution of the Committee of the Whole and implementation of a Finance Committee and Political Liaison Committee.
Lickers says the orientation also includes an organizational review of SNGR’s Governance Structure, Human Resources, Finance and Central Administration.
In an email to TRT Lickers said, “It is also our intentions to have a report to the community on this extensive phase regarding the outcome and next steps. The council decided to not have it in a public forum so there could be thorough discussions on each presentation to better understand our current position and to strategize on our next steps regarding fixing the gaps & challenges within our administration.”
At Tuesday’s general council meeting SNGR was confronted with more challenging revelations in front of a packed house.
Two Six Nations women who were seeking appeals to the 58th General Election say the Chief Electoral Polling Officer Steve Williams should be removed from his position.
Alaina VanEvery brought forward her appeal to council, alleging Williams disregarded her concerns.
VanEvery says she was sent an unsigned letter from “The Anonymous Six Nations Election Appeals Committee” saying her appeal and concerns about the 58th General Election were “irrelevant”.
Tensions were high in the council chambers as VanEvery demanded to know who was on the committee and said the community deserves to know who has decided her concerns, which were shared by the crowd of about 40 people in attendance, were “irrelevant”.
Chief Mark Hill shared the list of names he was provided by Williams, stating who is on the committee. The names on the list were just the first initial and last name of committee members.
SNGR passed a motion to carry on getting answers for the questions about the previous election that were raised in the two appeals, but acknowledged they are in a potential conflict as successful candidates during that election. Council says they will have further answers at next week’s general council meeting.
INJUNCTION ON PROTESTERS
A delegation of three people came forward to ask SNGR to lift the injunction imposed following the protests on the front lawn of Six Nations Central Administration building.
Lifting that injunction has been cited by the Haudenosaunee Confederacy Chiefs as a stumbling block to continuing discussions between hereditary chiefs and elected leadership.
SNGR passed a motion to investigate a path forward in good faith on how to lift the injunction.
Cannabis was also slated to be on the agenda for Tuesday’s general council meeting however the open session, which was originally slated to be one hour, went three hours. The delegation slated to present about Cannabis agreed to be deferred to a later date.