KAHNAWAKE, QC, Dec. 4, 2015 /CNW Telbec/ - The Mohawk Council of Kahnawà:ke (MCK) announced today that it is demanding an immediate meeting with Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard in the aftermath of legislation ('Bill 85') introduced into the National Assembly this morning regarding economic development plans for the Highway 30 corridor.
"We aren't disappointed – we are downright angry," said Grand Chief Joseph Tokwiro Norton. "This is political backstabbing at its absolute worst. Premier Couillard can no longer avoid us – we need to meet and we need to do it immediately."
The Quebec government passed a decree on 15, Onerahtohkó:wa/May 2013 to officially return approximately 500 acres of land on the north side of Highway 30 to Kahnawà:ke as compensation for land used for the expansion of the highway in 2008. The expansion was constructed within the Seigneury of Sault St. Louis land grievance.
"We remind everyone that the simple transfer of these land – which were ours to begin with – have been held up by a lawsuit filed by the mayors of the surrounding communities, accusing the government of failing to consult with them on this issue," continued the Grand Chief. "Isn't this the ultimate irony, then, that we are learning of legislation to develop these same lands for the obvious benefit of these same mayors?"
"Both federal and provincial governments have a legal duty to consult with First Nations on matters that may impact them on lands within their Territories," he added. "Not only did the province fail to consult us, they have actually refused to do so. This is beyond appalling. We will consider every action at our disposal to battle this atrocity."
"This is what we get when we try to be nice and play within the rules," he concluded. "So much for the assertion that Kahnawà:ke is considered 'a partner' in the economic development of the region. Partners don't get left out in the cold like this."
SOURCE MOHAWK COUNCIL OF KAHNAWAKE
For further information: Media Inquiries: Joe Delaronde, Political Press Attaché, (450) 632-7500 ext. 2251, [email protected]; Technical Contact: Winona Polson-Lahache, Mohawk Council of Kahnawà:ke, Kahnawà:ke Mohawk Territory, P.O. Box 720, J0L 1B0, Tel: (450) 632-7500, Fax: (450) 638-5958, As per the MCK Communications Protocol, all media requests must be arranged through the Public Relations / Communications Unit