Northwest Territories Devolution Act

Elizabeth May: Mr. Speaker, I thank my hon. friend for his discussion of Bill C-15. I agree with his colleague, the member for Western Arctic, that the bill would be more properly taken in two pieces.

On the devolution piece, I have heard most of the speeches from opposition members and I think they are in favour of the devolution. We have seen the territories wait for far too long to make decisions in their own name.

On the concentration of boards, as my hon. colleague just mentioned, the reduction of what may appear to some to be bureaucracy is to others a self-government apparatus. They are regional boards responsible to various first nations’ land claim settlement processes.

I wonder if my friend would agree that we should see all land claims settled in the area and ensure that all first nations are supportive when we go ahead with changing some of the aspects of their own governance structures.

Charlie Angus:

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank my hon. colleague for her excellent question and I think she points out what the Conservative government does all the time.

It is the Conservatives’ Monty Pythonesque Trojan Horse where they think they are going to be really bright. They take something as strong as devolution, which they know everyone supports, and then shove into it once again an undermining of environmental standards such as their attack on the Mackenzie River Valley management area. Then they attack anyone who does not support their Trojan Horse.

This issue is about ensuring that this is done right, so let us separate the bill. Let us bring in devolution, let us deal with it, and then let us look at the Conservatives’ plan to give the minister that kind of control. However, the Conservatives do not have the nerve to stand up and go public with this and so they try and hide it.