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Chief Na'Moks Grabbed and Isolated by Royal Bank of Canada at Stakeholders Meeting

by Brenda Norrell
Wet'suwet'en Hereditary Chief Na'moks was violently prevented from entering the Royal Bank of Canada annual general meeting. "Such a racist act, they've actually laid hands on me, a Wet'suwet'en Hereditary Chief on my regalia just now," Chief Na'Moks told the RBC, as snipers were stationed on the buildings where traditional elders gathered in an Indigenous delegation.
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Wet'suwet'en Hereditary Chief violently prevented from entering the Royal Bank of Canada annual general meeting

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News
April 5, 2023

SASKATOON -- Wet'suwet'en Hereditary Chief Na'moks was violently prevented from entering the Royal Bank of Canada annual general meeting on Wednesday.

"Such a racist act, they've actually laid hands on me, a Wet'suwet'en Hereditary Chief on my regalia just now," Chief Na'Moks told the RBC, as snipers were stationed on the buildings where traditional elders gathered in an Indigenous delegation.

Chief Na'moks, prevented from entering the meeting, and isolated in a separate room, delivered his address to RBC. Na'moks pointed out the violence against him as he attempted to enter and said that Coastal GasLink, financed by RBC, is using divide and conquer and does not have free, prior, informed consent.

"How dare you dismiss this! Dismiss me as a Chief of the Wet'suwet'en Nation."

Stressing that the Wet'suwet'sen are caretakers of the land, Na'moks said the Coastal GasLink pipeline is going through his backyard, damaging the land and water.

"We are the Title Holders," Chief Na'moks told RBC.

Chief Na'moks spoke during a press conference afterward. https://www.facebook.com/indigenousclimateaction/videos/3367425716849126

“I want to commend all the Indigenous peoples who came from so many communities to be here as part of our efforts to convince RBC as a global leader in banking that UNDRIP is not an option- it’s the law," said Grand Chief Stewart Phillips.

Stand Earth said in a statement:

RBC’s attempt to divide and threaten with arrest and physical violence the Indigenous delegation – who all have received necessary proxies – and shut out Wet’suwet’en Hereditary leadership is further confirmation of the bank’s commitment to corporate colonialism. RBC is the primary financier of the Coastal GasLink pipeline, which lacks consent from Hereditary Chiefs, the rightful titleholders of the land.

RBC has opted to apply a reserve system to its AGM, forcing Indigenous delegates into a second classroom, with a colour-coded pass.

Attempts by shareholders to hold RBC accountable and to seek change has resulted in the bank recommending the rejection of shareholder proposals around climate targets and Indigenous sovereignty as outlined below:

The Union of British Columbia Indian Chiefs, with the B.C. General Employees’ Union (BCGEU) brought forward a shareholder resolution to push RBC to operationalize free, prior and informed consent into its corporate policies and activities. While BMO and TD have expressed meaningful willingness to improve their policies, RBC has flat-out opted to recommend the rejection of the proposal.

Stand.earth filed a resolution for RBC to end financing for fossil fuel expansion.

New York City Comptroller Brad Lander and three of the New York City Retirement Systems (the New York City Employees’ Retirement System, Teachers’ Retirement System, and Board of Education Retirement System) have brought forward a shareholder resolution asking RBC to set absolute greenhouse gas reduction targets. To date, the bank has only set targets for reducing the amount of greenhouse gases per dollar invested, which allows the growth of its financed emissions.

This irresponsible and disrespectful move by RBC comes days after traditional owners of the Tiwi Islands in so-called Australia lodged human rights complaints against 12 banks – including RBC – for involvement in a $4.7 billion gas project. Last week, a large force of RCMP C-IRG raided a Gidimt’en village site, and arrested five land and water defenders, mostly Indigenous women on behalf of the RBC-financed CGL pipeline.

All of this highlights that RBC has no interest in reconciliation or the rights of Indigenous peoples. They are more focused on their bottom line at the expense of human rights.

RBC is currently under investigation by the Competition Bureau of Canada for allegedly misleading consumers with climate-related advertising while continuing to increase financing for coal, oil, and gas.

Gidimt'en Checkpoint: "We came together from different Indigenous communities across Turtle Island to share how we are impacted by industry fueled by RBC. A day of food, storytelling, sharing, and gifts. A day of sharing how RBC is destroying our communities and making our people sick. We discussed how we defend our territories, the beauty and our connection to the land.
We need to hold them accountable!

Wet’suwet’en delegation goes into the RBC AGM and confronts one of the biggest banks in the world, known for being a leader in funding fossil fuels."
https://www.facebook.com/wetsuwetenstrong

Read more:

Chief Na’Moks, Wet’suwet’en Hereditary Chief, said:

“CEO Dave McKay is personally responsible for the abuse Indigenous peoples received from RBC. This shows how Canada’s biggest bank has no interest in reconciliation or our human rights by implementing a two-tier rights system in separating Indigenous representatives from the main room."

"RBC is funding corporate colonialism, and displacing Indigenous peoples from our lands at gunpoint for fracked gas pipelines we cannot afford now or in the future. When BC and Canada claim we are committing ‘civil disobedience,’ the truth is we are being Civilly Obedient to our Traditional laws of protecting clean waters, lands and air. As much as RBC, Canada, and British Columbia try to extinguish our rights and title, we will remain the authority on our land.”

Photo from video on Twitter https://twitter.com/i/status/1643669245719609345
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