Makivik AGM opens in Quartaq this week

Makivik Corporation executive members are in an upbeat mood as their annual general meeting opens in Quartaq this week.


QUARTAQ — Makivik Corporation’s annual general meeting drew some 100 delegates to Quartaq this week, where a smiling group of executives, headed by Makivik President Pita Aatami, handed out hockey jerseys bearing Makivik’s “Team 99” colours.

With a record return on investments that’s boosted beneficiaries’ equity from $145 million to $157 million, the Makivik leadership’s mood at the meeting was generally up-beat.

And there was noticeably little of sometimes fierce commentary from delegates to the AGM that usually characterizes these yearly get-togethers.

“Maybe people are bored,” said one observer. “The same subjects get brought up every year and nothing happens.”

But Makivik president Pita Aatami felt that those present at the AGM were more up-to-date on the issues before coming to Quartaq.

“That’s because we have been meeting with all the communities,” said Aatami who recently finished a tour of Nunavik. “And I go on the radio every week, so people are more informed.”

During discussions around housing and the marine infrastructure program, delegates mainly wanted to see more local involvement to achieving quicker and cheaper action.

Although Makivik and the Kativik Regional Government have decided to let the Quebec housing corporation administer a recent $7 million injection of housing money, some delegates suggested that Nunavik become more involved with new housing construction.

Delegates also wanted to forge ahead with building docks that Nunavik’s communities badly need, possibly using Makivik funds to jump-start construction. With the long-awaited marine infrastructure program down from $122 million to $30 million, government funds are now expected to cover the cost of dock construction in only three communities.

But many felt that too much of this money was going to outside engineers and not enough going towards the actual construction. A small wharf in Quartaq, that was put up in only two weeks, has a price tag of only $50,000.

“Often we wait for the influx of revenues for these projects,” said Aqujaq Qisiiq. “I think we can do this for ourselves.”

Next week: a call for lower taxes, self-government? and awards

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