(Black Press file photo)

(Black Press file photo)

Hospitalization of hereditary chief puts Gold River protest against logging company on hold

Mowachaht/Muchalaht say road use dispute with Western Forest Products not a priority until recovery

Hospitalization of a Mowachaht/Muchalaht First Nation (MMFN) hereditary chief has put an ongoing protest against Western Forest Products on hold.

In a statement to the Mirror this morning, MMFN lands manager Dorothy Hunt said that one of the hereditary chiefs — whose name and reasons for hospitalization she did not reveal — was admitted to the intensive care unit last night.

“Our focus is on the positive recovery of our chief and WFP is not our focus,” said Hunt.

MMFN were in the process of implementing road access restrictions for the logging company on three routes frequently used by WFP for transporting product to their dry land sort and shipping facility in Gold River.

The restrictions were tied to an ongoing dispute over the company using part of Highway 28 that passed through Ahaminaquus Indian Reserve Number 12 (IR 12) without a road use agreement. MMFN is asking to be compensated by WFP for what they consider to be trespassing through their territory.

While negotiation is still underway with WFP and the provincial Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, MMFN was not happy with the compensation the company offered. While MMFN is asking to be compensated for use dating back to 2005, WFP came back with an offer of two years compensation.

WFP spokesperson Babita Khunkhun said that to respect the Mowachaht/Muchalaht First Nation’s recent request that commercial activity not take place on the highway, WFP temporarily moved hauling and sorting operations elsewhere for the time being.

“Our goal is to continue to work in good faith to reach a fair resolution,” said Khunkhun.

The provincial ministry is aware of the “issue” between MMFN and WFP (WFP), and “encourages open dialogue” between the two parties to find a resolution.

“The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure has been engaging in discussions with the MMFN around IR12 and will continue to move forward with these conversations,” said spokesperson Danielle Pope in an email statement.

MMFN’s decision to restrict road access to the logging company received support from Indigenous leaders and environmentalists across B.C. who expressed solidarity and condemned the actions of WFP.

RELATED: Vancouver Island First Nation blocks highway access to logging trucks in Gold River

RELATED: Kwakwaka’wakw hereditary chiefs stand with Gold River-area First Nation in road use battle with logging company

First NationsforestryGold River

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Joe Robertson and Jack Amos ran the length of Vancouver Island, with the help of their van Pippi, raising more than $12,000 for 1Up Victoria Single Parent Resource Centre. (Photo submitted)
Greater Victoria pair finishes running length of Vancouver Island a day early

Joe Robertson and Jack Amos raised more than $12,000 for single parents

The Sooke School District is actively looking for more bus drivers after they had to cancel a handful of bus routes in late November. (Black Press Media file photo)
Bus driver shortage cancels routes in Sooke School District

More drivers needed to accomodate expanding bus routes amid pandemic

Victoria’s Royal Jubilee Hospital took in two COVID-19 patients from Northern Health as part of a provincial agreement. (Black Press Media file photo)
Victoria hospital takes in two COVID-19 patients from Northern Health

Royal Jubilee Hospital takes patients as part of provincial transport network

Penny Hart is calling on the community to help find her son Sean Hart who was last seen on Nov. 6 at a health institution in Saanich. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)
Search spreads for Saanich man missing from mental health facility for nearly a month

Family hopeful as possible sightings reported across Island and in Vancouver

Island Health is expanding COVID-19 testing in Nanaimo with a new testing location at Vancouver Island University. (News Bulletin file photo)
Island Health issues apology over racist practices in health care system

Report by Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond finds ‘widespread systemic racism against Indigenous people’

(AP Photo/Paula Bronstein)
POLL: Has COVID-19 changed your plans for the holidays?

The lights are going up, the stacks of presents under the tree… Continue reading

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Dec. 1

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s coronavirus situation at the legislature, Nov. 30, 2020. (B.C. government)
Hockey team brought COVID-19 back from Alberta, B.C. doctor says

Dr. Bonnie Henry pleads for out-of-province travel to stop

B.C. Premier John Horgan on a conference call with religious leaders from his B.C. legislature office, Nov. 18, 2020, informing them in-person church services are off until further notice. (B.C. government)
B.C. tourism relief coming soon, Premier John Horgan says

Industry leaders to report on their urgent needs next week

(Needpix.com)
Fraudsters projected to use pet scams to gouge over $3M from customers: BBB

The pandemic heavily contributed to the number of puppy scams

Natalie MacMaster and Donnell Leahy are inviting audiences into their home for ‘A Celtic Family Christmas’. (Submitted)
Natalie MacMaster coming to you through Cowichan Performing Arts Centre

Here’s your chance to enjoy the famed fiddler in an online show with her husband Donnell Leahy.

An RCMP cruiser looks on as a military search and rescue helicopter winds down near Bridesville, B.C. Tuesday, Dec. 1. Photo courtesy of RCMP Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey
B.C. Mountie, suspect airlifted by Canadian Armed Forces from ravine after foot chase

Military aircraft were dispatched from Comox, B.C., say RCMP

An 18-year old male southern resident killer whale, J34, is stranded near Sechelt in 2016. A postmortem examination suggests he died from trauma consistent with a vessel strike. (Photo supplied by Paul Cottrell, Fisheries and Oceans Canada)
“We can do better” — humans the leading cause of orca deaths: study

B.C. research reveals multitude of human and environmental threats affecting killer whales

Most Read