R.I.P. Kelowna Accord November 2005 - June 2007
Well, it's very nearly official. In a last minute bargain, the Liberal and Conservative members of the Senate have struck a deal that will have the Liberals allow the Budget Implementation Bill to get past the Senate in exchange for which, the government will allow all bills currently up for third reading to be voted upon. This means that several important bills, such as C-288, an act that will order the Conservative government to meet the standards set out by the Kyoto Accord (Click for the Full Story). Unfortunately, Bill C-292 an act ordering the Conservative government to respect the Kelowna Accord, has passed second reading in the Senate, but has not yet cleared the committee stage. As the vote is scheduled for tomorrow, it seems unlikely to me that there is any chance of having the bill passed in time.
I suppose that even if this bill does not die on the Agenda, it does not really mean much for Canada's native peoples. Prime Minister Harper has already indicated that he doesn't intend to abide by it even if it is passed, though I suppose it would have allowed for certain groups to sue (which would no doubt hae taken forever, and only led to further frustration). So I suppose that the only chance of seeing Kelowna implemented is to hope for a Liberal governement.
Indian Affairs Minister Jim Prentice showed his government's usual respect for our native peoples, by not showing up for the first national aboriginal women's summit, which was held in Cornerbrook Newfoundland (Click for the Full Story). Evidently the Kelowna accord was a hot topic at this gathering and the Minister decided to show his true colours and run away.
Oh well, it should be interesting to see what the consequences are for C-288 getting through!