Roles

Elsewhere

Last in the Legislative Assembly September 1995, as MLA for High Arctic

Won his last election, in 1991, with 39% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Environmental Concerns June 22nd, 1995

(Translation) Thank you, Mr. Speaker and my colleagues. As I stated, we are very concerned about our environment. For instance, Panarctic went up to the High Arctic during the early 1960s. When they first started exploring they were very friendly to the people of the north, but now that they're almost concluding their projects in the High Arctic, they have stated that they would like to bury their equipment. They want to discharge all this old equipment out into the Arctic Ocean. Now they're very uncooperative with the people of my constituency. It seems like they're going against the very rules that DIAND has set out for them.

At the time, the Department of Indian and Northern Affairs and the company made an agreement that they would look after their own garbage and whatever junk they might have, and they would have to do away with the things that they have left behind, but it seems that they are going against the very agreement they had agreed upon years ago. Now they just seem to be doing away with the toxic waste and equipment for the people of the north to deal with. It's not just Panarctic, there are other companies that have just abandoned their waste. There is a lot of junk lying around in the Arctic, and they won't go back to clean it up. There are all kinds of barrels and heavy equipment that they're leaving behind.

I would like to, for the people who will be running in the future to become Members, encourage them to pursue this issue. Although the Indian and Northern Affairs department is responsible for this, they don't travel to the communities to see just how much junk there may be left behind by the companies.

The federal staff don't even bother to come up here. I know the Department of Fisheries and Oceans has a lot of power to do what they should do to clean up our Arctic waters, but they're not doing anything about this. We don't see any officials coming up north to see just how much damage may have been done to our waters or our lakes. They have no idea how big a problem this is.

I would like to encourage those future MLAs to pursue this. They should work hard to try and work with the federal government so they can clean up our environment, the northern waters and lands as we are very concerned about our environment. I wanted to talk about this issue, particularly.

Secondly, as I stated, I will make two statements on two different items. I would like to thank you all, all the new and veteran Members of the Legislative Assembly. I have worked with you very closely. Although it gets very stressful at times during our meetings, I think we have learned to work well together. I would like to thank the staff members of the Legislative Assembly for having helped us out in the long four years. I wish you the best in the future. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

---Applause

Environmental Concerns June 22nd, 1995

(Translation) Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Those of us who are here are all aware that today might be the last day of this session, the last session of the 12th Assembly. I would just like to make a short statement. I know that we have to speak on one particular item when we make Members' statements, but I think I will be making a statement on two items.

First of all, I would like to talk about the environment. We have a great concern about our environment today, and we have to take very good care of our lands in today's world. Early in the 1960s, various companies came to the north for oil and gas exploration projects. At that time, they had to get permission from Indian and Northern Affairs so they could come up north to explore. But today, looking at the northern environment, there are a lot of items that have been left behind by those companies; particularly old, rusty barrels have been lying around all over the northern environment. Although we would like to take good care of our environment and our lands, it's very difficult to try and clean up our environment.

The companies that have been up here have been the ones that have destroyed the natural beauty of our country. Although they have stated that we should be taking good care of the environment around us...

Mr. Speaker, I would like to receive unanimous consent to continue my statement. Thank you.

Minister's Statement 107-12(7): Gun Control Lobby June 22nd, 1995

Mr. Speaker, my apologies. As I made my point of privilege, the translation did come in. Thank you.

Minister's Statement 107-12(7): Gun Control Lobby June 22nd, 1995

Point of privilege, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, I wonder if this very important document will be translated, especially into the Inuktitut language?

Speaker's Ruling

Question 669-12(7): Allocation Of Community Freezer For Arctic Bay June 21st, 1995

(Translation) Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Regarding my question to the Minister of Renewable Resources, there was a concern regarding the Arctic Bay community freezer. Although it is quite old, they repaired it and had it running again. Has the Department of Renewable Resources made any plans for allocating a community freezer for that community? Thank you.

Approval Of Gun Registration Fee By Federal Government June 20th, 1995

(Translation) Last Friday, I heard a program on the radio from Iqaluit about the proposed gun control legislation. They interviewed Jack Anawak and it was a phone-in show. He was asked questions about the registration, about having to pay $50 to get a certificate. When he asked why this was the case, he answered that it was approved by the territorial government. I want the Inuit to understand fully that this gun control legislation was not introduced by the territorial government and is very much opposed by northerners.

The fee they have to pay, the $50, was established by the federal government. The federal government introduced this fee and I just want to make this clear to northerners. If I didn't misunderstand, the Member of Parliament said this was the case, but it wasn't introduced by the territorial government; it was introduced by the federal government. I just wanted to make that clear. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

---Applause

Item 9: Replies To Opening Address June 14th, 1995

We are expected, by our people, to work together, help each other and develop the north; not to make enemies. Because we see things differently, that is where arguments start sometimes.

(Translation) Mr. Speaker, I don't have much else to say, but I would like to thank everyone for their assistance to me, especially our Clerk. I would especially like to thank our Clerk. Since he became the Clerk, he has assisted me a great deal. Every time I ask him questions, he gives me answers. He advises me about how it would be best to do my work. I'm sure he has helped all of us. He works hard and never seems to hesitate to help or do his job. Even though he has helped us a lot, we have never given him anything. Since I won't becoming back, I would like to thank him, especially. To show my gratitude, I would like to present him with something, even though it's small, to show my gratitude.

I will be back, but I will give him what I want to give him, Mr. Speaker. (Translation ends)

--- Presentation

--- Applause

Mr. Speaker, I supplied the materials for what is in that box and my wife did the hard labour for making the things in that box.

I also would like to thank people who have helped me in the past, specifically Don Stewart. He taught me how to be a politician.

--- Applause

He passed away not too long ago. Also, Pete Fraser and others who aren't here right now, but they are still alive and I would like to thank them. I hope future generations will be settled in their communities better, because everything is happening too fast in the north, especially since the Commissioner and Deputy Commissioner ran the government. Things are happening, but they don't just happen overnight, they take time.

Mr. Speaker, I would like to finish off by saying to those people who are going to run again, good luck. I hope you get back and I know for sure there will be a lot more new faces in the 13th Assembly. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

--- Applause

Item 9: Replies To Opening Address June 14th, 1995

Thank you. (Translation) Thank you. I will make a short reply. It will be 20 years since I was elected. First of all, I would like to make an apology to my constituents because I haven't been able to visit them for a whole year. We had a lot of things to deal with, with regard to legislation. That's my first apology to my constituents. Hopefully, before August 30th, I will be able to visit my constituents.

Mr. Speaker, when I was first elected in 1975, I had more communities because Pond Inlet was included in my constituency. For the last election, they took Pond Inlet out of my constituency. It made it easier for me to visit the communities I represented, although it was cheaper then to visit my communities. Even though the number of communities has decreased, it is more expensive.

I would like to thank the people who supported me in my campaign when I ran, particularly, I would like to thank my wife who is up in the gallery. She has been very patient with me. Even though I was away a lot, she looked after everything. I would like to thank her, first of all. I would like to say to the Member for Kitikmeot, who used to sit right beside me, that since he has moved to the opposite side nobody has touched

because of the cutbacks in funding. They will have to start --- Laughter

... which is quite all right with me. Even though the person who sits beside me now is a female, she hasn't touched my legs. Residency Mr. Speaker, between 1975 and 1995 a lot of things have been accomplished in the north. Some of them are successful and some are not. The operation of the government has changed somewhat, which hasn't been very easy to deal with. Back in 1967 or 1968, a government was set up in the north and it was operated like a southern government. The Members were appointed. Back in 1975, there were 15 elected Members, and the Commissioner and the Deputy Commissioner led the government. I am happy to say today that this has changed. The Cabinet consists of eight, instead of two. The government in the north is more directed to the north now, and it works for the people of the north. We all know it is impossible to keep all the residents happy, but when you're representing people, you try your best to do what you have to do for your constituents.

Mr. Speaker, I was also involved when they were first dealing with the division of the Northwest Territories and it was a very difficult task. I won't go into details as to why; there were a lot of things involved. The Northwest Territories is a vast area to be handled by one government. I would like to thank the people who worked with me during the plebiscite and the people who were working on the boundary of where Nunavut should be. I am sure that western Arctic people will pick out an appropriate name for their region, Mr. Speaker. During my time, I am proud to say that when I first started back in the Baffin region, there were no hamlets. When they first started, they could become a hamlet if the population was 500 or over. Now, all the communities have hamlet councils. Also, in order to get a satellite for the communities, they had to have 500 people or over. Nowadays, all the hamlets have television services. I am very happy to see that.

Mr. Speaker, I am also proud, especially in my constituency, there has been lots of development within the past 20 years. I won't go into detail, but there have been two mines started; Nanisivik and Polaris. They also built a road from Nanisivik to Arctic Bay and it is the longest road in the Baffin region. A lot of new schools have been built in those communities, gymnasiums, et cetera. In my constituency, there will be the first arena built in Arctic Bay. Those are the major developments that have happened and I wanted to mention them because I am proud to see that.

Within that last 20 years, it hasn't always been easy. We have gone through sad times. I have had sad times and happy times. I have lost a lot of relatives when the House was sitting; I also lost a younger brother who passed away when I was here in Yellowknife. These times can be strenuous, but I am happy that I overcame them.

Like I said before, I am going to make my reply brief because I know this will be my last time during this 12th Assembly. I would like to say that I won't be running at the next election. I will miss all of you. I am not saying I won't be running again because I am too old, I am just not too new any more.

Mr. Speaker, I know for a fact that the 13th Assembly will have my leg ... a lot of work ahead of them. One of the main reasons will be working on self-government in Nunavut. The residents of

Nunavut believe in this and are expecting this. There will be alot of other work for the 13th Assembly.

Mr. Speaker, I have noticed when they are first elected, Members can be good friends and help support each other; however, I have seen, more than once, after a while they become enemies. (Translation ends)

Some people understand differently. Someone says a word I understand, but you understand differently. I see something and you see something ... For example, this glass is half-full and you can say it is half empty. That is where arguments start sometimes. I have seen, a number of times, people become enemies. People are not electing us to become enemies, they are electing us to work together.

Question 609-12(7): Relocation Of Polar Bear Management To Baffin Region June 14th, 1995

(Translation) Thank you, Mr. Speaker. In the previous session, I asked a question. I will ask a supplementary to a question I asked at that time. This is to the Minister of Renewable Resources. Polar bear management isn't going to stay in Yellowknife; they will be moved to the Baffin region. Since their office is going to be transferred over to that region, when does the Minister think that is going to happen?