Federal Court will hear First Nations case to halt Transparency Act
Onion Lake Cree Nation will ask Federal Court to end a proceeding against 8 First Nations
The Onion Lake Cree Nation's case against the federal government will be heard in Federal Court today in Saskatoon.
The federal government has taken eight First Nations, including Onion Lake, to court to force them to comply with the First Nations Financial Transparency Act (FNFTA).
The FNFTA requires First Nations to submit audited financial statements, along with the salaries of the chief and councillors. That information is posted publicly on the internet.
CBC's Dan Zakreski was tweeting live from court. Read the tweets below.
- On mobile? View the tweets here.
So far, 570 of 582 First Nations have complied, and four others are working co-operatively with the federal government to meet the requirements.
The government has filed applications in Federal Court to force the remaining eight bands to submit financial information for the 2013-14 fiscal year. It has suspended funding to to these bands except for that which covers essential services, such as health and education.
The Onion Lake band, which covers territory in both Saskatchewan and Alberta, is asking the court to halt those proceedings.
Their application questions the legality of the FNFTA on the basis that it violates treaty and aboriginal rights as well as sections of the Constitution that ban discrimination and entrench the rights of aboriginal people.
The government cannot take any action against the bands until the application is heard by the court.
The hearing is set to run two days.