“I met them in my office yesterday; I met with the Chief from Moberly, Roland Willson, and we met for breakfast this morning to discuss Site C,” Zimmer explained. “…It was basically to voice their concerns they have that are in the report that the National Energy Board has done and voice their concerns about some of the impacts of the proposed project.”
Chief Logan and Willson posted a controversial photo on Twitter moments after concluding with MP Zimmer – their middle finger pointed directly at Parliament with the caption “Treaty 8 Chiefs Logan and Willson salute Harpers office.”
Treaty 8 Chiefs Logan and Willson salute Harpers office. pic.twitter.com/eR5eScN0wC
— Liz Logan (@DeneWoman1) September 23, 2014
Both Chief Logan and Willson were unavailable for comment in time for publication.
MP Zimmer was somewhat taken back by the photo as he says once their meeting concluded, he left the table with the feeling they’ve engaged in a productive conversation.
“I thought it was an interesting thing to do because I thought we had some good discussions,” Zimmer said. “We didn’t agree on everything …and even though that decision is forthcoming, the actions displayed were a little bit of a surprise.”
Zimmer says he understands the environmental concerns of First Nation leaders and their supporters, but ultimately the federal government needs to base their decision on “what’s good for all Canadians.”
“We want to have a project that meets environmental criteria especially and hopefully satisfy all stakeholders and constituents as best as possible,” Zimmer goes on to say. “…We hope we have a consensus support when that decision is made but we’ll see how that goes.”
Zimmer says he looks forward to meeting with First Nation representatives in the future as the provincial and federal government are expected to release their decision on Site C within the next month.
“I was happy to meet with local Aboriginal leaders; I’ve met with them in the past and want to continue on meeting with them,” Zimmer concluded. “It doesn’t mean will always agree on issues but I look forward to more positive meeting in the future.”