Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I rise today regarding the point of privilege raised on Tuesday, November 24, 1992 by the honourable Member for Thebacha, Mrs. Marie-Jewell.
Mrs. Marie-Jewell was forced to raise a point of privilege to refute serious and misguided allegations of political interference and influence in the News/North. As an elected aboriginal person from a small community, Mrs. Marie-Jewell has to fend off these serious and damaging allegations in order to perform her duty as an elected Member from that constituency.
Mr. Speaker, this is an unfortunate incident which raises an even larger issue for many Members of this Legislative Assembly. How can they address constituency issues that arise in our small and closely related communities? Mr. Speaker, the kinship patterns of aboriginal people are quite different from those of Euro-Canadians, and that may cause some of the problem.
To give you some background about how I am connected to my region, I will provide you with some examples. My aunt is the executive director of the Baffin Regional Council. My brother is the president of Pangnirtung Fisheries. My cousin is the Mayor of Pangnirtung. My cousin's husband is the Mayor of Clyde River. I do have some relatives and friends within T.F.N. Suffice it to say, Mr. Speaker, that I have relatives or close friends serving on virtually every board, council or agency and participating in every sector of the economy in the Baffin region.
Mr. Speaker, if I cannot raise issues relating to my constituency where it might be perceived on the surface that a conflict of interest exists because my family or friends are directly or indirectly involved, then I could not adequately perform my duties in this House.
Mr. Speaker, I seek unanimous consent to conclude my statement.