My thoughts on the Westbank First Nation alleged corruption claimed by the former chief.
It's true a former government employee did hand in a 2009 land appraisal and I’m not sure how it got by the checks and balances. But it did.
The (WFN) based the land value off of that (appraisal). It should have gone to a realtor who could sell the property for as much money as possible. Now the former employee is speaking up at every chance he gets at WFN member meetings. He has been a critic of the (WFN) government he used to work for and who made a decent living and ran his department the way he wanted.
He has his supporters but I am not one of them. The WFN could have used that (lost) money to fix up older rental housing stock. Lots of the older units on Fox Road need new appliances and quality faucets and windows and doors, plus updated flooring. I’m sure there is a roof or two to be replaced also.
Being a self-governing nation, there is not the cash flow from the federal government anymore. The members voted down self-government twice, only to have the (then) chief and council change the rules for approval and continue to hold votes even after it was rejected by the majority of the (WFN) population two times in a row.
So we are on our own now, no more “gravy train” of dollars to help the community and pay for stuff (that is) needed.
Our (WFN) government sold $5 million worth of real estate in 2021 for $1.5 million. Wow, that is a big oversight. Maybe self-government is not working the way people expected when they voted yes back in the day?
Just my two cents on the subject as it affects me and my child as we are both WFN members.
Graeme Derrickson, Westbank First Nation