The Sudbury Star is the City of Greater Sudbury’s daily newspaper.
A former mining company CEO could take two First Nations leaders to court in January if they do not issue a public apology for alleged slander and defamation.
Darryl Stretch, the former president and CEO of Solid Gold Resources Corporation, gave Dave Babin, chief of the Wahgoshig First Nation, and Harvey Yesno, grand chief of the Nishnawbe Aski Nation, until Dec. 17 to issue a public apology for comments they made at a Sudbury press conference on Nov. 7.
Both parties did not respond to Stretch’s letter by that date. Jamie Monastyrski, director of communications with the Nishnawbe Aski Nation, said they will issue a statement responding to Stretch’s allegations in the new year.
Babin said in the Nov. 7 press conference that his First Nation has only ever had problems dealing with Solid Gold Resources. “We’ve had other companies contacting us saying they want to work with First Nations,” Babin said. “They are learning the rules coming in. They seem to understand our issues. We’re willing to work with them. We’ve proven that with the many companies on our territory.”
In a release on the same day, Babin and Yesno asked the province to withdraw support from what they said were “racist and radical industry representatives, particularly members of the Mining United group and the Ontario Prospectors Association.”
Stretch said the Wahgoshig First Nation also called him a racist in an affidavit filed in April.
“I don’t think it’s appropriate that we start hollering at each other in racist tones,” Stretch said.
In January 2012, the Wahgoshig First Nation obtained an injunction against Solid Gold Resources that prevented the company from drilling near Lake Abitibi, where the band argued it has traditional territory that should be protected.
But Stretch has argued the land is owned by the Crown, and the Wahgoshig First Nation should have no legal claim over it.
For the rest of this article, please go to the Sudbury Star website: http://www.thesudburystar.com/2013/01/08/stretch-still-waiting-for-public-apology