The Babine Lake Hereditary Chiefs and members are calling for the Lake Babine Band Council, the province, and Canada to cease the Pathway Agreement that was signed on Sept 18.

According to a statement, the Hereditary Chiefs did not authorize or give consent to the agreement.

“The negotiation of the Agreement and signing by Lake Babine Nation, Canada, and the British Columbia provincial government violated our traditional laws,” said the statement.

The statement also said the agreement represents a trespass on our jurisdiction to govern our territories and people.

“It also arguably infringes on our constitutional rights and the responsibilities in the United Nations Declaration on Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which sets minimum standards to protect our right to self-determination,” it said.

The Babine Lake Hereditary Chiefs said the Lake Babine Nation is made up of two bands- Old Fort and Fort Babine and many of the communities do not wish to be part of the Lake Babine Nation band.

They are also demanding that Federal Minister of Indigenous Affairs Carolyn Bennett and Minister of Indigenous Services Marc Miller to conduct a forensic audit from 1956 to 2020 of Lake Babine Nation to take steps to dismantle the amalgamation of Old Fort and Fort Babine bands into Lake Babine Nation.

The statement also said the Hereditary Chiefs will be taking legal action.

The Pathway Agreement was signed earlier this month via Zoom by Lake Babine Band, Canada, and the Province.