NPC’s problems must be solved within Nunavut, NTI says


Like Nunatsiaq News, NTI is very concerned by recent reports about problems at the Nunavut Planning Commission.

As of your newspaper’s coverage last Friday, we are all now in possession of a great deal more by way of accusation, counter accusation, and rumour. Some basic facts, however, have yet to be reliably established.

In the years since the coming into force of the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement, the NPC, and the Commissioners and staff who constitute it, have done valuable work on behalf of the people of Nunavut. Out of respect for that work, and out of fairness to the individuals involved, we should insist that judgements are well-grounded.

Your editorial begins with the observation that the problems of the NPC should not just be laid at the feet of the Minister of DIAND. NTI agrees.

The creation of a set of resource management boards for Nunavut through the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement – indeed, the creation of Nunavut itself – rests on the proposition that Inuit and other residents of Nunavut have the will to make tough decisions for ourselves and the courage to take responsibility for those decisions.

While the Minister of DIAND has a legitimate interest in ensuring, in cooperation with the Government of Nunavut and NTI, that public moneys are appropriately spent, it is up to those of us who live in Nunavut to show the primary initiative in acknowledging problems in our midst and in finding constructive solutions to those problems.

The effective operation of resource management boards is essential to the proper implementation of the NLCA. Effective operation means, among other things, boards operating with a high degree of independence, transparency, and efficiency, and their sustaining public confidence.

NTI firmly believes that the Chairman, board and staff of NPC has the ability to function on its own. Appropriately, if perhaps belatedly, a review of the NPC operations by outside consultants is now underway. In the short term, the most appropriate approach would be to await the completion of the report.

At that time, longer term solutions can then be weighed and adopted. The current Commissioners and staff of the NPC would best meet their responsibilities to the public by finding a way to work together to oversee the completion of that report.

Paul Kaludjak
Nunavut Tunngavik Inc.

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