November 19, 2018 – Kuujjuaq (Quebec) – During the Makivik Gala held on November 14, 2018 in Kuujjuaq at the Katittavik Town Hall four new recipients to the Order of Nunavik were named.
They were: Charlie Tooktoo of Kuujjuaraapik, Lazarusie Epoo of Inukjuaq, Jacob Oweetaluktuk of Inukjuak, and Johnny Watt of Kuujjuaq.
Members of the families of Charlie Tooktoo, Lazarusie Epoo, and Jacob Oweetaluktuk accepted the medals on behalf of the recipients as they have passed away. Johnny Watt was present for the ceremony and accepted his award on stage during the emotional ceremony.
The Order of Nunavik is conferred upon Inuit men and women for outstanding achievement in different fields. The Order celebrates the accomplishments of Nunavik Inuit of all ages and inspires Nunavik beneficiaries to strive to reach their goals.
This ceremony was different in that a brand-new medal was publicly awarded for the first time. The new medal was in development over the past two years.
The original James Bay and Northern Quebec Agreement Signatories were also given their new medals during the Makivik Gala. In 2015 the JBNQA Signatories were honoured with the Nunavik medal and provided with temporary plaques.
We were pleased to provide the signatories each with a new medal, and to a family member for those who have passed away.
Eleven Inuit signed the JBNQA on November 11, 1975. They are: Charlie Watt, George Koneak, Johnny Williams, Zebedee Nungak, Putulik Papigatuk, Tommy Cain, Robbie Tookalook, Peter Inukpuk, Mark Annanack, Sarolie Weetaluktuk, and Charlie Arngak.
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Makivik is the land claims organization mandated to manage the heritage funds of the Inuit of Nunavik provided for under the James Bay and Northern Québec Agreement. Makivik’s role includes the administration and investment of these funds and the promotion of economic growth by providing assistance for the creation of Inuit-operated businesses in Nunavik. Makivik promotes the preservation of Inuit culture and language as well as the health, welfare, relief of poverty, and education of Inuit in the communities.