Cherokee Nation Files Suit Against Federal Government Over Its Trust Fund
TAHLEQUAH, Oklahoma - The Cherokee Nation says it filed suit against the federal government Monday, claiming the United States mismanaged the tribe’s trust fund.
According to a news release, the suit asks the U.S. government to provide an accurate accounting of the Cherokee Trust Fund, which includes property, land, funds and other resources the government may have mismanaged over decades.
“There is a strong desire for resolution of these breach of trust issues,” said Bill John Baker, Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation. “This is long overdue, and the Cherokee people are owed their rightful assets and resources. It is my duty as Principal Chief to make sure the United States upholds their promises to our people.”
The tribe says November 28, 2016, is the 231st anniversary of the Cherokee Nation’s first treaty with the United States. It was called the Treaty of Hopewell and the tribe says it was the first of more than 40 treaties and official agreements the United States government broke over the last two centuries.
The Cherokee Nation says the United States agreed to hold certain resources in trust for the Cherokee Nation through treaties and other agreements. The tribe says the U.S. government took unilateral control of the Cherokee Nation’s trust funds at times, illegally and wrongfully controlling the Cherokee Nation government and mismanaging the tribe’s affairs.