Jim DuHart is hoping and praying to get boots on the ground in Ottawa on Feb. 24 for a march on Parliament Hill and a demonstration of disgust with the Qalipu enrolment process.
The Corner Brook native, who is living in Brockville, Ont., and was rejected on appeal to the enrolment, is calling on members of Qalipu First Nation and potential members to join him in this demonstration.
He said in a telephone interview on Tuesday it is now the time for Mi’kmaq people from Newfoundland and living elsewhere to take their cause directly to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada, Caroline Bennett.
DuHart is hoping for a large crowd to join in the walk, which is 15-minutes maximum and the demonstration aimed at the showing people’s disgust with the enrolment process, including the 2013 Supplemental Agreement and Bill C-25.
He said he represents the grassroots people, including everyone who has the legitimate right to be Mi’kmaq.
DuHart said the demonstration has two objectives: grassroots people will not be left behind; and the telling of their story.
“There are 36 million people in this country and if we can tell them our story, so much the better,” he said. “Our message will be loud and clear so everyone in Canada can witness the discrimination this is being imposed on our people across the country.”
Participating people are asked to meet in front of Albert and Bay Suite Hotel at 435 Albert St. in Ottawa between 8 and 8:30 a.m. on that day. The march will start at 9:45 a.m. and go directly to Parliament Hill with the demonstration taking place on arrival.
DuHart said it is important for him to know how many people will be taking part and they can notify him on his Facebook page or call him at 613-640-1010.
He said he has already had conversations with Chief Brendan Mitchell of Qalipu First Nation, with his Spiritual Advisor Calvin White, Elder Odelle Pike and Ken (Mutchie) Bennett.
Mitchell has indicated he will be in attendance.
Matto-law Collins (Canadian flag) and his daughter Abigal Collins (Mi’kmaq flag) have been chosen as flagbearers for the march.
DuHart said he is also hoping to get people from the Algonquin nation in Ontario to march with them.
He said the focus of the event will be peaceful and respectful and participants are expected to conduct themselves in such as manner.