Mr. Speaker, I welcome the hon. member's comments. I served on the yes committee in my riding for the Charlottetown accord. I agree that probably for the first time Indian rights, self-government and so on were included in a constitutional type of document.
I think there was an error made in that document, despite my support of it, and in my riding it passed by a narrow margin. I think it said far too much and was very unclear. Many people did not understand what it was getting at.
I remember having some trouble explaining it and having trouble in my own mind. One had to say that it really did not mean what it sounded like, so it had to mean this. Yet we were not able to find out what in fact it did mean. I share the member's concern.
With respect to some of the Reform Party's agenda, its members have hammered unnecessarily and unfairly, saying that there has been a lack of accountability with respect to the moneys used on first nations reserves.
The first nations are going to make the same mistakes and have the same problems running their governments with respect to taxes and money as many of our communities.
We sometimes forget that in every province there is an office which sends administrators and accountants to municipalities if they get into difficulty. They take over the administration of affairs until matters are straightened out. These things do not happen very often because we have been developing our system for a long time, but our native people have not had much time to develop their system.
We have to remember that on April 1, 1999, five months from now, we will have a new territory in which the language is going to be Inuktitut and where 50% or more of all of the employees for government services, including health services, social services and community services are going to be Inuit. They are working very hard with our help now to train the people who are going to be needed for those public administration posts.
We have not heretofore done enough of that with our aboriginal people, but we are doing more. I think with practice, with responsibility, with recognition and a little less emphasis on some of the negatives we will see before too long some real results.