Lubicon Lake Nation Tells Penn West Petroleum to Frack Off!
Peaceful Occupation of Penn West Petroleum Site Begins Little Buffalo, Alberta
The Lubicon Lake Nation people have been driven to enforce their Law against PENN WEST PETROLEUM LTD. (TSX: PWT); (NYSE: PWE) today on an oil lease site located in their Territory by peacefully occupying a nearby access road.
The oil and gas giant Penn West has indicated they intend to drill and use hydraulic fracturing at the location. The site is at the headwaters of a nearby lake, bordered by the traditional Lubicon community of Kinosew Sakahikan referred to provincially as Haig Lake.
Long-time Chief Bernard Ominayak said this evening: We have never signed treaty, ceded our land, nor sold it to anybody. It’s high time that all resource companies operating on Lubicon Lake Nation lands, including Penn West, as well as the Provincial and Canadian governments respect that and stop destroying Lubicon land and stealing Lubicon resources.
The Lubicon Lake Nation has not signed treaty with the Crown or any other foreign body at any time. As such, they remain the sole title holders and retain the Aboriginal rights to their land and resources and do not recognize the authority of the Province to issue any type of permits to industry for the exploitation of Lubicon land. The Government of the Lubicon Lake Nation requires industry to obtain the free, prior and informed consent from the Nation prior to any environmentally harmful project moving forward. This hasn’t happened in this case according to Chief Ominayak. Penn West has been repeatedly informed by the Nation that no foreign government, including any Canadian endorsed, illegal, Indian Act formed government, will represent the Lubicon Lake Nation with regards to their lands.
On November 18, 2013, a group of Lubicon Lake Nation people visited the Penn West jobsite to inquire about the presence of equipment and large number of Penn West personnel on location, as the Lubicon Lake Nation was not properly consulted and has not given their consent to Penn West. Initially, Penn West agreed to halt the work and attend a meeting on November 20, 2013. The following day the company called to cancel the meeting and restarted their illegal operations. As a result, the Government of Lubicon Lake Nation passed a Council Resolution and Order indicating that Penn West was trespassing on Lubicon land and had to vacate the territory immediately. This Order was issued in accordance with two Lubicon statutes that had been passed by the Government of the Lubicon Lake Nation in 1988 and 2012. The Government of the Lubicon Lake Nation is enforcing these laws as they would any other and expect the RCMP to join them to do the same.
Following receipt of the Orders, on November 25, 2013, Penn West representatives met at the Lubicon Lake Nation Administration Office with Chief Ominayak, Council, Elders, Council representatives and a group of Lubicon Lake Nation citizens. Penn West refused to address the issues and presented a hardline position: They would not engage with the Lubicon Lake Nation government nor would they cease their operations. Lubicon citizens and representatives outlined yet again that they were being forced into third world living conditions, only to watch while oil and gas companies like Penn West extract billions of dollars in oil and gas from their lands.
Forced into this difficult position, the people of the Lubicon Lake Nation have travelled one hour deep into their territory and indicate that they intend to remain at the location until Penn West ceases operations and takes their requests seriously, as Penn West’s development is having real consequences on their health, wellbeing and lands of the Lubicon Lake Nation, including the air, water, soils and animal habitats.
For More Information Contact:
Councillor Dwight Gladue
Lubicon Lake Nation
P.O. Box 6731 Stn. Main
Peace River, AB T8S 1S3
(780) 625-4208 Direct
(780) 629-3939 Fax
Posted on November 27, 2013, in Oil & Gas and tagged fracking, fracking Alberta, Lubicon Cree, Lubicon Lake Nation, native blockades, native protests, Penn West Petroleum. Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.