First Nations leaders continue to speak out in support of Jody Wilson-Raybould.
Wilson-Raybould abruptly resigned from the Liberal government cabinet on Tuesday.
Speculation has been swirling around Parliament Hill that she may have been pressured by the Prime Minister’s office to influence a court case involving SNC Lavalin while serving as justice minister.
Saskatoon Tribal Council Chief Mark Arcand says there is no doubt Wilson-Raybould’s movement out of the justice portfolio and subsequent departure from cabinet hurts the Trudeau government on reconciliation matters.
“Yes, I feel this sets back reconciliation a little bit because I don’t know if it’s inappropriate that she was let go, or whatever the case is, but again that is the government’s decision, we don’t have a say in that,” he says.
Overall, Arcand says the government is sending the wrong message by the way it has treated Wilson-Raybould.
“The two ministers that I think were doing some good stuff was Jody and Minister Jane Philpott (former Indigenous services minister) and the child welfare forum. So, we’ve got two ladies that were shuffled out but were making tremendous strides for First Nations people and also other Canadians.”
B.C. First Nations leaders also issued a joint statement of support for Wilson-Raybould on Wednesday.
She was serving as minister of veterans affairs when she left cabinet.
Wilson-Raybould says she still plans to serve as a member of the Liberal caucus.
(PHOTO: Saskatoon Tribal Chief Mark Arcand. File photo.)