CBC puts Fentie to work

Premier Dennis Fentie will appear on the CBC television show Make the Politician Work on Sunday. The show's producers sent Fentie to Minto mine for three days in November.

Premier Dennis Fentie will appear on the CBC television show Make the Politician Work on Sunday.

The show’s producers sent Fentie to Minto mine for three days in November. During that time, he hand-shovelled mine tailings, operated drills, set off explosives and helped with a practice rescue.

It was all a flashback for Fentie, who spent many years working around minesites as a trucker and construction worker.

“I spent some time at the end of the mud stick because it meant making a living and putting food on the table,” he said in an interview. “You’ve gotta do what you’ve gotta do.”

Fentie’s big concern during the filming? Messing up.

“I didn’t want to create a scenario that compromised the safety of others within the operation, because it’s been a long time since I’ve been around any of this stuff.”

He didn’t need to worry: the mine managers kept a close eye on him. And safety standards have improved greatly since Fentie started working as a labourer in the late 1960s.

So have environmental checks. Back then, “there was no such thing as air tickets,” said Fentie. “Water sampling? What?

“Mining in the Yukon today is much more surgical, cleaner, and environmentally sensitive,” he said.

Fentie also claims that he scored the winning goal of a ball hockey game with mine workers. To see whether that made the show’s final cut, you’ll need to tune in.

The show starts at 7:30 p.m.

Contact John Thompson at


Just Posted

Whether the dust jacket of this historical novel is the Canadian version (left) or the American (right), the readable content within is the same. (Michael Gates)
History Hunter: New novel a gripping account of the gold rush

Stampede: Gold Fever and Disaster in the Klondike is an ‘enjoyable and readable’ account of history

Yukonomist Keith Halliday
Yukonomist: Your furnace and your truck need to go

Perhaps the biggest commitment in the NDP deal with the Liberals was boosting the Yukon’s climate target


Wyatt’s World for May 14, 2021.… Continue reading

Copies of the revised 2021-22 budget documents tabled in the legislature on May 14. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Liberals introduce new budget with universal dental and safe supply funding

The new items were added to secure the support of the NDP.

Community Services Minister Richard Mostyn speaks to reporters on May 13. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Cap on rent increases will take effect May 15

The rollout of the policy is creating ‘chaos,’ says opposition

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Family pleased youth will be able to get Pfizer vaccine

Angela Drainville, mother of two, is anxious for a rollout plan to come forward

Safe at home office in Whitehorse on May 10, 2021. (John Tonin/Yukon News)
Federal government provides $1.6 million for Yukon anti-homelessness work

Projects including five mobile homes for small communities received funding.

Drilling at Northern Tiger’s 3Ace gold project in 2011. Randi Newton argues that mining in the territory can be reshaped. (Yukon government/file)
Editorial: There’s momentum for mining reform

CPAWS’ Randi Newton argues that the territory’s mining legislations need a substantial overhaul

At its May 10 meeting, Whitehorse city council approved the subdivision for the Kwanlin Dün First Nation’s business park planned in Marwell. (Submitted)
KDFN business park subdivision approved

Will mean more commercial industrial land available in Whitehorse

Main Street in Whitehorse on May 4. Whitehorse city council has passed the first two readings of a bylaw to allow pop-up patios in city parking spaces. Third reading will come forward later in May. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
Whitehorse council pursuing restaurant patio possibilities

Council passes first two readings for new patio bylaw

Neil Hartling, the Tourism Industry Association of the Yukon president, left, said the new self-isolation guidelines for the Yukon are a ‘ray of hope’ for tourism operators. (Ian Stewart/Yukon News file)
Yukon tourism operators prepared for ‘very poor summer’ even with relaxed border rules

Toursim industry responds to new guidelines allowing fully vaccinated individuals to skip mandatory self-isolation.

A lawsuit has been filed detailing the resignation of a former Yukon government mine engineer. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
A year after resigning, former chief mine engineer sues Yukon government

Paul Christman alleges a hostile work environment and circumvention of his authority led him to quit

Most Read