Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Our North is rich in resources, and yet we have yet to fully untap the potential of our people, our youth. We have potential in our lands. The trick to any government is to connect that potential with each other. That’s the trick of any leadership, any people. How do we untap the potential of our young people, the ones who are going to school, with the opportunities that are rich in our lands? Through imagination, through initiatives.
The Sahtu sits in the midst of amazing wealth and resources, but we have not yet realized how we have access to this wealth and these resources. It’s sitting there waiting for us. The closest we have come was in the 1930s and ’40s, first with the uranium mine and Great Bear Lake, tapping that resource, and then the Canol pipeline in the ‘40s. The key part of these two projects were done without any input or tapping the knowledge from the Aboriginal people, the owners of the land. Today in the Sahtu this is not the case. We have a land claim that was negotiated and settled. It has the highest constitutional protection in Canada. This is the highest law in Canada.
The Sahtu is rich in its economic opportunities. We have a way to realize we have a way to participate with this government in developing the region. We have a labour force that wants to work. It does not want to be dependent on government handouts. We have resources that need to be untapped.
I will ask further questions of the Minister of ITI at the appropriate time. Thank you.