HomeDomesticFirst Nations chief critical of Alberta Premier Danielle Smith's Indigenous heritage claim

First Nations chief critical of Alberta Premier Danielle Smith’s Indigenous heritage claim

A First Nations chief in Alberta is questioning Premier Danielle Smith’s claim of Indigenous heritage.

Smith has stated she has some Cherokee roots and years in the past declared herself as an individual of combined race.

Chief Tony Alexis of Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation, west of Edmonton, stated on Friday {that a} true Indigenous particular person wouldn’t go in opposition to treaty folks.

He made the remark at a information convention the place leaders of Treaties 6, 7, and eight stated they oppose Smith’s plan to introduce an Alberta sovereignty act that will enable her authorities to decide out of federal measures deemed dangerous to provincial pursuits.

When the leaders had been requested about Smith’s ancestry claim, many within the room erupted with laughter.

“A real Indigenous particular person wouldn’t go in opposition to all of the treaty folks of this land,” stated Alexis.

“What we’re realizing is that anyone desires to be a component of the Indigenous neighborhood if there is a profit.”

A narrative this week by the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network appeared into Smith’s household tree and located no proof of the premier being Indigenous. APTN labored with Canadian and Cherokee genealogists and examined U.S. census reviews from the late 1800s in it is investigation.

CBC has not independently verified APTN’s reporting.

The premier’s workplace issued a press release following the story stating, “Smith hasn’t finished a deep dive into her ancestry however is proud of her roots.”

“Like so many Albertans which have origins from all around the world, Premier Smith has heard about her heritage from her family members. Her household has spoken for years about their ancestry and she or he is proud of her household historical past.”

Chief Tony Alexis from Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation speaks at Lac Ste. Anne in July. Alexis stated Friday {that a} true Indigenous particular person wouldn’t go in opposition to treaty folks. (Trevor Wilson/CBC)

APTN stated Smith claimed to be an individual of “mixed-race ancestry” in 2012, when she was chief of the Wildrose Party.

In the legislature that yr, APTN stated Smith spoke about her great-great-grandmother.

“She was a member of the Cherokee Nation that had been forcibly relocated to Kansas from the southeastern United States within the 1830s by the U.S. authorities, a horrible stain on the historical past of America referred to as the Trail of Tears,” Smith stated, in response to legislative data obtained by APTN.

More lately, Smith declared Indigenous lineage through the United Conservative Party management race.

“As somebody with Indigenous ancestry, I honour the heritage of Canada’s Indigenous Peoples as one of our nation’s and province’s biggest treasures and strengths,” stated the tweet from Smith on Sept. 28.

Some false claims of Indigenous ancestry have lately come to gentle at universities in Canada.

Alexis stated there’s all the time a motive for Indigenous id fraud.

“At the college stage, now we have people who find themselves not Indigenous who claim that they’re Indigenous to achieve advantages, to achieve bursaries and so forth,” stated the chief.

“There’s all the time one thing behind it.”


This story was produced with the monetary help of the Meta-Canadian Press News Fellowship, which isn’t concerned within the editorial course of.

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