(Vancouver, BC) British Columbia Métis Federation (BCMF) Founding President Keith Henry welcomed Kelly Lake Métis Settlement Society (KLMSS) President Lyle Letendre as BCMF’s very special Coffee Talk guest last night and the online live stream audience responded in the greatest numbers the show has ever recorded. Unfortunately this large audience caused delays in the system but the show is available on the site today.
Over 3000 initial viewers came online to hear KLMSS President Letendre describe his Métis community one of the only historic Métis settlement communities in British Columbia dating back to his ancestors accompanying Alexander MacKenzie’s expedition in 1792 into the area. KLMSS is located at Kelly Lake which is located 120 kilometers southwest of Dawson Creek, British Columbia and fifty kilometers west of Hythe, Alberta in Northeast British Columbia. There are approximately 150 people that reside in the community’s forty-five homes. An additional 190 (estimated) people were raised in the community and continue to stay connected with their families although living in other parts of the province and throughout Canada.
BCMF Founding President Keith Henry discussed at length with Lyle Letendre the initiatives that will empower this community in economic development and continue Métis cultural education.
On behalf of the Kelly Lake Métis Settlement Society President Letendre signed a Statement of Cooperation with the BCMF on June 11th 2011 that that will see the two organizations acting cooperatively on issues like culture, education, housing, health care and Métis governance and representation at the federal and provincial government levels.
BCMF President Founding President Keith Henry also took time out to congratulate Métis individuals Earlene Bitterman and Daryl Piper who courageously cut up their long-standing MNBC citizenship cards and mailed it along with a letter revoking their registrations as MNBC citizenship card holders. Their actions are a direct result of their concerns about the MNBC debt, the MNBC loss of cultural support, the MNBC lack of respect of the people, and the MNBC President’s inability manage and properly address the chronic overspending leading to a the MNBC debt admitted by the MNBC to be no less than $2,300,000.00.
In the hour long broadcast from the BCMF Founding President Keith Henry spoke to a number of pressing issues including a recent MNBC Media Release under MNBC President Bruce Dumont’s signature that contained factual misrepresentations and what appear to be outright lies once more.
BCMF President Keith Henry stated; “Métis people of British Columbia are tied of these same personal attacks. It is nothing more than trying to divert the attention of the real challenges we have been demanding MNBC to address for over 2 years. There is no credibility to the MNBC communication. Really the very first line states the CCMC has been making false statements since 2008. Well the CCMC did not start until October 2009 so how can anyone believe anything these people say.”
BCMF President Henry added; “I invited MNBC President Dumont to attend next Thursday in studio to have an open and pubic discussion about the issues. The seriousness of the financial mismanagement by MNBC is what matters, the loss of cultural support for our communities and Métis people is what matters, the late payments on tuition for funding MNBC received is what matters, therefore put your personal agenda aside and openly discuss and answer the questions. Should MNBC President Dumont appear on Coffee talk next Thursday July 14th at 7:30PM I would expect a huge online audience waiting to hear his remarks and it is safe to assume it will be the largest audience ever given his continues claims that BCMF and myself personally are making false statements.”
BCMF Founding President Henry concluded; “I look forward to seeing Métis people celebrate our culture this weekend at the Métis Days hosted by the BCMF at the Klahowya Village in Stanley Park. BCMF has now made arrangements to broadcast the commemorative celebration on Saturday, July 9th night from 6-9 PM to provide all Métis people a chance to witness the First Nations invite the Métis people through this work into their territory. Those who cannot attend can now tune in @ www.livestream.com/metis. Onwards and upwards!”
British Columbia Métis Federation
[ilink url=”/wp-content/uploads/BCMF-Press-Release-July-8th-2011.pdf” style=”download”]Click here to download this press release in PDF format.[/ilink]