The Beautiful Nisga’a Lisims Government Building at night. All Photos By Bob Goulais.
Jamie Restoule, Allan Dokis, Bob Goulais representing the Union of Ontario Indians, President Nelson Leeson, Chairman Kevin McKay and Secretary Treasurer Edmond Wright representing the Nisga’a Lisims Government Executive.
Our Mission to B.C. – Day 1
NEW AIYANSH, B.C. Nisga’a Nation — As a bit of a cost saving measure, our delegation split up the duties for our mission to British Columbia. This evening, Grand Council Chief John Beaucage and Anishinabek Nation Management Group Inc. General Manager Greg Plain had dinner with Chief Clarence Louie the leader and CEO of the Osoyoos Indian Band. Tomorrow they will get a tour of the bands operations.
The day truly belonged to myself, Intergovernmental Affairs Director Allan Dokis and Self-Government Project Manager Jamie Restoule. After a long day of flying to New Aiyansh, BC yesterday, we bunked in for the night in anticipation for a long day of meetings.
Instead, we awoke to the spectacular vista of the Nisga’a Nation Territory in the beautiful and breathtaking Nass River Valley. We awoke to a backyard view like no other. This is indeed the most beautiful place I’ve ever visited on Earth.
To business: We had the pleasure of meeting Nisga’a President Nelson Leeson, who spend the entire day with us in the Nisga’a Government Legislature. Also joining us for the whole day was Chairman Kevin McKay, while Secretary-Treasurer Edmond Wright provided much wisdom to us throughout the entire morning. I was overwhelmed that the three top leaders of this self-governing territory would spend all that time with us, as we explored the nuances of an actual self-governing Nation.
We had an excellent lunch hosted by the Nisga’a Lisims Govenment and met their Elders Chairperson Chester Moore. We ate smoked salmon and curried salmon.
We learned so much about self-government and were fed by their tempered enthusiasm of these elder statesmen.
We hope to visit again soon with Grand Council Chief Beaucage and hopefully our entire Chiefs Committee on Governance.
Directors Les Clayton, Collier Azak and Harry Nyce Sr. took the time to answer many of our technical questions.
The Nass River, the lifeblood of the Nisga’a people and home to the Sockeye, Coho and a delicacy called cockels. This is all Nisga’a land, water and natural resources.
The lunar landscape of the Lava Beds Provincial Park which is co-managed by the Nisga’a Nation. This lava flow from a volcanic eruption only 250 years ago stretches along the Nisga’a Highway. Over 2000 Nisga’a from two villages are buried under this strange geological forms.
The panoramic view from the Nisga’a Highway between New Aiyansh and Terrace, BC.
Jamie Restoule, Allan Dokis, Les Clayton and some children from Gitwinksihlkw, one of the four Nisga’a villages.
Bob enjoys some of the scenery from a foot-bridge in Gitwinksihlkw on the Nass River.