Gwich’in Tribal Council gets clean audit for 2014
Today's day three of the Gwich'in Annual General Assembly in Inuvik, N.W.T., and delegates intend to raise questions about financial management.
This year's independent audit of the Gwich’in Tribal Council shows no irregularities with the way its board of directors has managed more than $10 million in revenue.
John Stetler, an independent auditor from KPMG, presented his findings at the meeting.
“In our opinion the results present fairly,” Stetler said. “So overall that's a clean audit opinion.”
But that’s not stopping delegates from questioning the way it's being managed by the council.
Wilbert Firth is a delegate with the Tetlit Gwich'in in Fort McPherson.
He says he still has questions about the Gwich'in owned trucking company Dinjii Zhuh.
“How much was there?” he asked. “And we want to know how it was spent. That's the main thing. How it was spent? And what were the ramifications of how it was spent.”
The auditor has assured them that every penny from the company can be accounted for.
Nevertheless they're still asking for details of the company's expenses.
“We can't accept a financial statement and find out there was a lot more damage than it is today,” Ruby Koe said.
Despite Koe's objections, the delegates voted to accept the auditor's report and then have a later debate on the finances of the Gwich'in owned trucking company.
People at the gathering are also grappling with the sudden death of Gwich'in Tribal Council President Robert Alexie only two months ago.
Prayers were offered in his memory when the meeting opened on Tuesday.