TORONTO — The Six Nations Men’s Fire is the latest to step into the Six Nations land claim — filing a motion earlier this month to officially object to Aaron Detlor and Brian Doolittle as the Haudenosaunee Development Institute from stepping in as interveners or to speak for the Haudenosaunee people at large.
A motion was filed with the courts in early November by the Six Nations Men’s Fire with supporting evidence to demonstrate that the HDI does not have the proper authority to speak on behalf of the Haudenosaunee people.
As part of the claim, the Men’s Fire says they agree that the land claim should be settled by a proper representative of Haudenosaunee law but say that entity is not HDI.
The Men’s Fire, or Hodiskeagehda, says the legitimacy of the HDI is still in question due to an ongoing legal dispute they filed which has yet to be resolved.
In their objection to the HDI stepping in as intervener they claim that the HDI is operating in a breach of trust and that HDI has fraudulently represented themselves as caretaker for the Haudenosaunee people.
The Men’s Fire further claims that the Declaration of Trust signed to establish the HDI included the names of chiefs who were deceased or are no longer serving as chiefs, that the HDI has been using funds collected for their personal benefits and that they have failed to obtain the approval of the Haudenosaunee people with respect to land lease rights agreements.
In objection to the HDIs motion to intervene in the Six Nations land claim, the Men’s Fire says that HDI claims to have been created pursuant to the authorization of the HCCC and also made to be a delegate of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy — but says that both claims are backed by sparse supporting evidence that suggests certain members of the HCCC, but not all of its members and representatives, were consulted to give HDI it’s legitimacy as a representative.
The Men’s Fire specifically direct opposition at HDI’s President Brian Doolittle, who in his claim says he was directed via a Zoom meeting by 10 chiefs in April 2022 to begin a claim to intervene in Six Nations land claim.
The Men’s Fire says that Doolittle does not provide any evidence to support that the meeting actually took place — and does not provide evidence to support that the direction given to him to intervene was properly carried out according to Haudenosaunee law.
Doolittle says that the claim was carried out by representatives from three sides of the HCCC benches, but the Men’s Fire claim that Haudenosaunee Law provides that the people as a whole must be consulted first and that the meeting should have included representation from both male and female representatives from all different groups who fall under the Confederacy.
The Men’s Fire also claims that under Haudenosaunee law the HCCC can only operate through the unanimous consensus of the 49 clan families. There is no evidence presented by HDI that there was any proper consultation or unanimity achieved to appoint HDI to represent the Haudenosaunee people.
The Men’s Fire says the HDI has been operating by consulting a small circle of chiefs and HCCC representatives and have failed to involved the Haudenosaunee poodle as a whole or acquire their approval.
The Men’s fire says this small circle does not have the authority to delegate authority to the HDI to speak for the whole of the Haudenosaunee people — and say that proper notice was not given to all people who are the rightful inheritors of the Haldimand Tract.
Case conferences continue to be heard in the HDI motion to intervene and letters have been sent from various communities and organizations to respond to the HDI claim that they represent the entire Haudenosaunee population.