Whitebeach Point exploration project rejected by the Tłı̨chǫ

Tłı̨chǫ reject name change and controversial Whitebeach Point exploration project in the NWT.

May 3, 2017 – Behchokǫ̀, NT - A Calgary based company has recently announced the renewal of an exploration effort in a controversial area, in the North Arm of Great Slave Lake, known as Whitebeach Point.  

The Tłı̨chǫ Government has consistently been against all exploration and development in Dinàgà Wek’èhodì where Whitebeach Point is located and, in particular, any development or exploration in the four northern claim blocks or any part of the Chedabucto mineral claims.  

It is not a matter of a poor consultation process or of any misunderstanding of the project or its economic potential.  The Tłı̨chǫ Government does not support development or exploration of the area; its priority values lie in the cultural and ecological realm.  

The company, Explor, has unilaterally appropriated a Tłı̨chǫ name for this project.  The name change—from Chebaducto Project to Whagwe—is both inappropriate and disrespectful.  The misuse of this Tłı̨chǫ name implies the project enjoys the support of the Tłı̨chǫ, or that it has Tłı̨chǫ origin, neither of which is true. 

There are protocols that must be followed before the Tłı̨chǫ language may be used.  Naming projects in the Tłı̨chǫ language is carried out with respect, through joint understanding and agreement and with the involvement of elders. The Tłı̨chǫ Government is disappointed in Explor’s misappropriation of our language and its lack of respect for the culture and traditions, and request the discontinuation of this Tłı̨chǫ name in respect of this project.  

We note that the proponent has advertised using Facebook a public meeting tomorrow in Yellowknife. The Tłı̨chǫ Government does not rely on Facebook for government invitations, and has found the approach taken towards this project disrespectful. As such, no representatives of the Tłı̨chǫ Government will be present.  

For further information or press inquiries, please contact:

Henry Zoe,
Senior Community Director
Tłı̨chǫ Ndek'àowo / Tłı̨chǫ Government
Phone: 867-766-4003

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