Canada fulfills obligations under the Manitoba Northern Flood Agreement



    WINNIPEG, Aug. 24 /CNW Telbec/ - The Honourable Chuck Strahl, Minister of
Indian Affairs and Northern Development and Federal Interlocutor for Métis and
Non-status Indians, today announced the conversion to reserve status of
10,281 acres of provincial Crown land for the benefit of the Nisichawayasihk
Cree Nation (NCN) under the First Nation's 1996 Comprehensive Northern Flood
Agreement (NFA) Implementation Agreement.
    "The Government of Canada is committed to ensuring that legal obligations
are fulfilled under the Northern Flood Agreement, in which the Nisichawayasihk
Cree First Nation was impacted by the operation of Manitoba hydro electric
projects," said Minister Strahl.
    The lands set apart as reserve consist of three parcels known as:
Suwannee Lake (2,342 acres); Wapisu Lake (4,551 acres); and Odei River
(3,388 acres). Converting lands to reserve status can result in new
relationships among neighbouring communities and governments leading to
positive results for both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal communities.
    In December 1977, the NFA was signed by Canada, the Province of Manitoba,
Manitoba Hydro, and the Northern Flood Committee Inc., a corporation
representing five First Nations: Cross Lake First Nation, Norway House Cree
Nation, Tataskweyak Cree Nation, York Factory First Nation and Nisichawayasihk
Cree Nation.
    The 1977 NFA was intended to address adverse effects experienced by its
First Nation signatories in connection with Manitoba Hydro's operation of the
Lake Winnipeg Regulation and Churchill River Diversion (LWRCRD) project. One
feature of the NFA was compensation for the flooding of reserve land.
    In 1996, Nisichawayasihk Cree Nation entered into a Comprehensive NFA
Implementation Agreement (CIA) with Canada, Manitoba and Manitoba Hydro for
the purpose of clarifying roles and responsibilities of each party in
connection with the LWRCRD project.
    Currently, the Nisichawayasihk Cree Nation has three more NFA land
selections requiring the conversion to reserve status under its CIA. Canada
will be working with the Province of Manitoba and the First Nation on the
transfer of these remaining parcels in order to finalize all Nisichawayasihk
NFA land obligations.

    This release is also available on the Internet at www.inac.gc.ca




For further information:

For further information: Minister's Office: Ted Yeomans, Director of
Communications, Office of the Honourable Chuck Strahl, (819) 997-0002; Media
Relations: Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, (819) 953-1160


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