73-Year-Old Traditional Healer Charged with Sexual Assault on Former Healing Camp Client

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KENORA – NEWS – Langford Ogemah, a 73-year-old traditional healer, has been charged with sexual assault, with the alleged victim being a former client of a healing camp that he ran in 2021 southeast of Kenora, Ontario. According to sources, the Ontario Provincial Police charged Ogemah on March 1, 2023, with one count of sexual assault, which allegedly took place between July 29, 2021, and December 30, 2021.

Ogemah was the leader and “visionary” of the Gamikaan Bimaadiziwin Healing Centre on Bug Lake until he was removed from his position in the Christmas of 2021.

According to court documents, the alleged victim is a former client of the camp who was there to work on years of trauma. Ogemah has been working as an addictions worker for his First Nation, Wauzhushk Onigum, next to Kenora, since his removal as leader of the camp.

Ogemah’s first court appearance is scheduled for March 16, 2023.

It is essential to note that the Grand Council of Treaty 3 received nearly $500,000 in funding to build an all-season roundhouse lodge on the site of the healing camp last September. Grand Council Treaty #3 has been contacted but has not made any comments on the case.

Grand Council Treaty #3 and Miisun and Miitigoog General Partner Inc Collaborate on Bug Lake Project

Couchiching First Nation Chief Brian Perrault and Ogichidaa Francis Kavanaugh, Grand Chief of Grand Council Treaty #3 at Grand Entry this morning at the Treaty #3 Spring Assembly being held in Couchiching First Nation.
Couchiching First Nation Chief Brian Perrault and Ogichidaa Francis Kavanaugh, Grand Chief of Grand Council Treaty #3 at Grand Entry this morning at the Treaty #3 Spring Assembly being held in Couchiching First Nation.

Ogichidaa Francis Kavanaugh and Grand Council Treaty #3 would like to acknowledge Miisun and Miitigoog General Partner Inc. for their assistance in the Bug Lake Project.

Throughout this spring Grand Council Treaty #3, under the guidance of Elder Langford Ogemah, has been working to establish an on-the-land treatment program at Bug Lake.

This project is meant to provide opportunities for those seeking healing to return to the land and use traditional practices to improve their lives. As the funding for this project is limited, numerous individuals have sponsored the project with their time and effort.

Formed in 2008, Miisun is a 100% Anishinaabe owned and operated company dedicated to various aspects of the forestry industry under the Miitigoog General Partner Inc. A central goal of Miisun is the harmonization of forestry best practices with Anishinaabe environmental stewardship. The seven communities forming the partnership are Niisaachewan, Naotkamegwanning, Onigaming, Shoal Lake 40, Northwest Angle 33, Naongashiing, and Wabaseemoong.

Miisun and Miitigoog volunteered equipment, and personnel, and supplies to clear brush, improve road access, and establish the beginnings of the Bug Lake camp. These contributions were supplemented by Weyehaeuser – a long time partner of Miisun and Miitigoog.

EACOM Timber Corporation also contributed supplies and equipment. It is through assistance from Anishinaabe organizations such as Miisun and Miitigoog that back-to-basics initiatives such as the Bug Lake Project become a reality.

“We are extremely proud here in Treaty #3 to have our Anishinaabe communities with the capacity to do our own work, on our own lands, for our own people,” said Ogichidaa Francis Kavanaugh. “The fact that we can now make these visionary on-the-land healing projects a reality utilizing our own companies and our own expertise demonstrates how far we have come.”

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