Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

December 7, 2021

Reckless Spending and Exposures -- White House spread virus on Navajo Nation. Navajo federal virus funds used for sports car and penthouse in unauthorized contract.

Dine' volunteer Bitahnni Wilson delivers water to fellow Dine', near the Navajo capitol of Window Rock. More than $2 billion in federal relief funds from the American Rescue Plan were received by the Navajo Nation government, but have not been distributed to Dine' in need. Dine' elderly, isolated families and the sick and dying continue to ask for help. There were 100 new cases of coronavirus, and four deaths, on the Navajo Nation on Friday.

Reckless Spending and Exposures -- White House spread virus on Navajo Nation. Navajo virus relief funds from unauthorized COVID testing used for sports car and penthouse. 

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News
Dec. 7, 2021

The Navajo tribal controller's unauthorized COVID rapid testing contract resulted in  Navajos federal virus relief funds to be spent on a British sports car and  penthouse.

Former Navajo controller Pearline Kirk  received an annual salary of $225,000, according to new charges filed by the Navajo Nation.

The charges involve an unauthorized contract to Agile Technologies, a company conducting unauthorized and reckless types of COVID-19 rapid testing on Navajos.

The luxury spending was during the same time that food banks, and Dine' volunteers raised their own funds and carried water and food to desperate Dine', as the coronavirus spread through the Navajo Nation in 2020.

Today, the Navajo Nation reports that there is uncontrolled spread of coronavirus in 61 communities. Now, 1,551 Dine' have died from coronavirus.

In another exposure, a new book reveals how former President Trump exposed White House staff to the coronavirus after he tested positive for COVID 19.

Among those exposed were the White House senior staff, who then came to the Navajo Nation -- and who did not observe quarantine. In the days and weeks that followed, many White House staff tested positive for the virus.

Navajo Vice President Myron Lizer brought the exposed White House senior staff to Window Rock to meet with the Navajo Nation Council on Oct. 27, 2020.

The next day, Navajo Vice President Lizer took the exposed White House staff to a dedication at the Navajos' Birdsprings School.

Just days earlier, Navajo Vice President Lizer and Trump Jr. exposed vulnerable Navajo elderly and children to the virus during a virus super spreader event on Oct. 15, 2020, in Williams, Arizona, west of Flagstaff.

While new charges have now been filed naming the former Navajo tribal controller, another secret deal -- to buy bankrupt Remington Arms -- is not being exposed.

Now, in December of 2021, the spread of coronavirus reached new highs. On Friday, in one day, 100 new cases were reported, and four deaths, on the Navajo Nation. This comes even though Navajos have one of the highest rates of vaccinated adults in the U.S.

Although the Navajo Nation received $2 billion in relief funds from the American Rescue Plan in June of 2021, those funds have not been distributed to Dine' in desperate needs. Dine' volunteers continue today to take water and food to Dine' in need in the 110 Navajo Nation communities in Arizona, New Mexico and Utah.

New book reveals Trump exposed White House after testing positive

At the Navajo Nation Council chambers in Window Rock, Arizona, Navajo Vice President Myron Lizer met with senior White House staff and other federal officials, after Trump tested positive for COVID 19, and the virus spread through the White House. 

When Trump first learned he had tested positive for the corona­virus, he was already aboard Air Force One, en route to a massive rally in Middletown, Pa.

"With him on the plane that Saturday evening were dozens of people — senior aides, Air Force One personnel, junior staffers, journalists and other members of the large entourage typical for a presidential trip — all squeezed together in the recirculating air of a jetliner," the Washington Post reports.

While the coronavirus spread through the White House, a White House delegation met with the Navajo Nation government and attended a dedication of the Little Singer School at Birdsprings on the Navajo Nation, where there was an uncontrolled community spread of COVID-19. Read the article in Censored News. 

Navajo tribal controller charged for unauthorized, reckless,  contract for rapid COVID testing

The Navajo Nation Justice Department alleges former tribal controller Pearline Kirk mislead and deceived Navajo Nation officials into approving a contract for over $3 million to hire a COVID-19 testing company to serve the approximately 110 employees of her office, approximately $27,000 per person to be served, the Navajo Nation release states.

It also states that the company's chief executive used the payments to fund an "extravagant and luxurious lifestyle" that included the purchase of a British sports car and rent for a penthouse.

Read the article at The Daily Times: 'Navajo Nation brings new charges against former controller'

Read more about new charges:

Agile Technologies provided COVID services during First Lady Jill Biden's visit to the Navajo Nation. The Navajo Nation said the controller's contract for reckless testing and unauthorized methods provided by Agile was never authorized.

The Navajo Nation said that the company receiving the unauthorized COVID testing contract, Agile Technologies, rented space at the Navajo Shopping Center and continued to administer these unauthorized COVID-19 tests. It was misleading the public into believing it  operated on behalf of the Navajo Nation, according to the Navajo Nation's cease and desist order.

The bizarre COVID intervention was described by Yahoo News.

Agile Technologies distributed "bipolar ionized necklaces," watch-like wearables to monitor body functions, and used "ionization" to disinfect 10 tribal buildings, according to Agile's marketing campaign published on Yahoo News.

Agile's marketing campaign also states it provided COVID-19 services during First Lady Jill Biden's visit to the Navajo Nation in April.

In the cease and desist order, the Navajo Nation said Agile Technologies handling of blood samples and disposal of medical waste was endangering safety.

Read the article at Censored News: 

Navajos secret deal to purchase Remington Arms the second time

It was during the pandemic in June 2020, and it was the second time that Navajo Nation Council Committees pursued buying bankrupt Remington Arms.

During this time, both the cases of COVID and deaths from the virus increased on the Navajo Nation. Dine' on the Navajo Nation, in Arizona, New Mexico and Utah, pleaded for water, food, cleaning supplies and home health care.

Documents provided to Censored News show outside consultants were highly paid by the tribe during the arms negotiations, which were kept secret during the pandemic.

Navajo officials offered $300 million for the bankrupt arms company. In the end, others bought Remington Arms for far less. Remington is being sued for the manufacture of the assault weapon used to murder children at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Read the article at Censored News

Trump Jr and Navajo Vice President exposed Navajo elderly and children in super spreader event

As the coronavirus spread through the White House, Trump Jr. and Navajo Vice President Myron Lizer exposed vulnerable Dine' elderly and children to the virus in a super spreader event in Williams, Arizona, west of Flagstaff, on Oct. 15, 2020. Neither Trump Jr., nor Lizer, were wearing masks or observing social distancing.

One Navajo reporter had the courage to tell the truth

Navajo reporter Sunnie R. Clahchischiligi reporting at Searchlight New Mexico had the courage to tell the truth in August of 2020. Dine' elderly were alone, sick and in desperate need of water, food and help. Many isolated Navajos, without transportation, sick and dying were left alone.

It was also in August of 2020 that the Navajo Nation government -- the Navajo Council and Navajo President -- gave $24 million of its federal virus relief funds from the CARES Act, to its casinos.

Navajos pleaded for water and food, because of broken pumps, dysfunctional windmills and the lack of transportation to haul water. Some Dine' were too weak and sick from the virus to get out of bed to haul water or go for food.

It was not until months later, in January of 2021, that the Navajo government distributed relief checks from the CARES Act to Navajos.

Today, there is uncontrolled spread of the virus in 61 communities on the Navajo Nation.

The State of New Mexico, which provides a daily update, shows constant spread of the virus in Farmington, New Mexico, nursing homes, schools and stores.

The WalMart store on Main St. and the Life Care Center nursing home, both in Farmington, have had repeated outbreaks since last year. Families filed charges against Life Care for neglect and failed care.

The virus also recently spread through Navajo area schools in San Juan County, including those in Bloomfield and Kirkland, New Mexico. 

While the virus continues to spread, the Navajo Nation Council approved new helium mining in Sanostee, New Mexico.

Dine' gathered Saturday in Sanostee to oppose the mining and asked Dine' Medicine People to help protect sacred Beautiful Mountain from being gouged by mining.

Navajo Nation: Uncontrolled spread of coronavirus
Dec. 2021

Based on cases from Nov. 19 to Dec. 2, 2021, the Navajo Department of Health issued a Health Advisory Notice for the following 61 communities due to uncontrolled spread of COVID-19:
Bird Springs
Black Mesa
Bread Springs
Coyote Canyon
Indian Wells
Inscription House
Low Mountain
Navajo Mountain
Oak Springs
Red Mesa
Rock Point
Rock Springs
Rough Rock
St. Michaels
Standing Rock
Tachee/Blue Gap
Tuba City
Twin Lakes
Upper Fruitland
White Horse Lake

Also see:
Navajo Times: The coronavirus first spread on the Navajo Nation, resulting in deaths, after the gathering of Nazarene Church in March 2020.

About the author
Brenda Norrell has been a reporter in Indian country for 39 years. She began as a reporter at the Navajo Times during the 18 years that she lived on the Navajo Nation. She was a correspondent for Associated Press and USA Today, covering the Navajo government and federal courts. After serving as a longtime staff reporter for Indian Country Today newspaper, she was censored and terminated. She created Censored News in 2006 and continued to report on Indigenous Peoples and human rights, including her time with the Zapatistas in Mexico. She has a masters degree in international health, infectious diseases, water and nutrition.

Article copyright Brenda Norrell, Censored News

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