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Pine Ridge

Occupation Peoples

Grass Roots Oyate

January 16, 2000

Until we Win

Lodge.jpg (43667 bytes)

 

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GRASS ROOTS OGLALA LAKOTA OYATE
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April 5, 2000

Mr. Richard Zephier
Bureau of Indian Affairs
Acquisition and Property Mgmt.
Great Plains Regional Office
115 Fourth Avenue S.E.
Aberdeen, South Dakota 57401

Dear Mr. Zephier:

RE: Proposed Plan of Operation of the Financial System on Behalf of the Oglala Sioux Tribe

In response to your letter dated April 4, 2000 to Mr. Wilbur Between Lodges regarding the above mentioned matter, we are writing to you to express great concern over your lackadaisical approach to our current state of emergency on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

Understand we, the Grass Roots Oyate are in agreement with your proposed actions, with the exception of #6. We are opposed to the way in which it was presented at the illegal Tribal Council session on the 4th day of April 2000. We say "illegal" because OST President Harold Salway was suspended in a special session council meeting, convened by Between Lodges without authorization, and without proper quorum.

Concerning # 7 in your letter, you propose to "…contract with a CPA to perform a review of tribal management systems… We have the highest regard for Mr. Jaime Arobba and believe that he holds the Oyate’s best interest at heart. He maintains high ethical standards and we are demanding that you desist from advising the Tribal Council that they may choose another auditor for the remainder of this investigation. Mr. Arobba is enmeshed in our Tribe’s financial records and we want him to remain on board to audit 1995 – 1998, which Assistant Secretary Gover stated that the BIA will pay for. We believe that this is the only hope we have for a fair and impartial audit.

At any rate, you have admitted that the BIA does recognize that there is a gross mismanagement of Public Law 93-638 contract dollars. Therefore, why do you feel the need to ask permission from this tribal council to carry out these actions? We are way beyond bureaucratic cautionary practices. With every day that passes, Wesley "Chuck" Jacobs is spending the Oyate’s precious federal funds on his personal interests and those of the OST Council. Importantly, how will the taxpayer’s of the United States of America react to how the U.S. Department of Interior handles their tax dollars?

We are requesting that the BIA uphold its trust responsibility, under Article I of the 1868 Treaty at Fort Laramie. You have a fiduciary responsibility to the members of the Oglala Lakota Tribe, not the Tribal Council.

We would like a written explanation and plan of action from your office within 72 hours.

In respect,
 
 
__________________________
Oliver Red Cloud, Chief

Attach.
Cc: Dean Cycon, Esq.
Kevin Gover – Assistant Sec’y of Interior
Senator Tom McCain - Arizona
Senator Ben Knighthorse-Campbell/
Senate Select Committee on Indian Affairs

 

Red Cloud Building
P.O. Box 51, Pine Ridge Agency, South Dakota 57770
Phone (605) 867-5303 Fax (605) 867-2115
http://members.tripod.com/GrassRootsOyate

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