OUJÉ-BOUGOUMOU, QC, June 11, 2013 /CNW/ - The Grand Council of the Crees (Eeyou Istchee), the Cree Regional Authority, the Oujé-Bougoumou Cree Nation are pleased to announce that they have signed a pre-development agreement on June 10, 2013 with Northern Superior Resources Inc. ("Northern Superior") regarding the future exploration and pre-development of Northern Superior's Croteau Est and Waconichi mineral exploration projects in Eeyou Istchee.
The Council of the Oujé-Bougoumou Cree Nation approved the agreement on April 17, 2013. The approval of the agreement by the Grand Council of the Crees (Eeyou Istchee) and Cree Regional Authority on April 12, 2013 represents the support of the Cree Nation as a whole, and ensures a stable environment for the future exploration and pre-development of the Croteau Est and Waconichi mineral exploration projects.
The official signing ceremony took place in Oujé-Bougoumou, Québec, on June 10, 2013.
The agreement reflects the parties' common desire to promote a cooperative and mutually respectful relationship concerning the exploration and pre-development activities of Northern Superior for its projects in Eeyou Istchee Territory. Northern Superior has undertaken to provide meaningful Cree participation in the awarding of contracts for the supply of goods and services.
Should the mineral exploration projects be advanced to a point where Northern Superior is required to file a "Notice of Intent" with the Ministère du Développement durable, de l'Environnement et des Parcs, Northern Superior has undertaken to then conduct a business and employment capacity study to assess the business and employment capacity within Oujé-Bougoumou. In addition, Northern Superior will also then open a business development office in Oujé-Bougoumou and hire a community member as an environmental monitor, to enable the Parties to jointly monitor the activities of Northern Superior during the term of the agreement.
The Crees have agreed to support the projects and to cooperate with Northern Superior in the preparation of environmental and social impact assessment studies, should Northern Superior advance the projects to a stage where such studies are required.
Finally, the Parties have agreed that if Northern Superior has determined that the projects are economically viable with the completion of a pre-feasibility study, to begin discussions towards concluding an Impacts and Benefits Agreement with respect to the Croteau Est and Waconichi mining projects of Northern Superior.
"Through the adoption of the Cree Nation Mining Policy and the execution of this agreement, we have undertaken to support and participate in mining exploration within our Traditional Territory." said Dr. Matthew Coon Come, Grand Chief of the Grand Council of the Crees (Eeyou Istchee). "This agreement marks the beginning of a collaborative and fruitful relationship between the Crees and Northern Superior, a relationship based on an alignment of interests, founded on environmental and economic sustainability and the respect of Cree rights. The Crees and Northern Superior will continue to cooperate, as partners, in the economic and social development of Eeyou Istchee."
Mr. Reggie Neeposh, Chief of the Cree Nation of Oujé-Bougoumou, stated: " We are very pleased to be signing this agreement today as it reflects the kind of mutually beneficial working relationship which is required to promote harmony and good will throughout our region. In particular, we are happy to see this kind of relationship develop which acknowledges our rights and our role in the territory. We look forward to continued good relations with Northern Superior as these projects progress in a spirit of openness, transparency and cooperation.".
Dr. T.F. Morris, President and CEO of Northern Superior comments: "We are very pleased to receive the support of the Cree Nation of Oujé-Bougoumou, the Cree Regional Authority and the Grand Council of the Crees (Eeyou Istchee) for Northern Superior's Croteau Est and Waconichi gold exploration mineral properties. This support will assist greatly in advancing exploration on these properties, and ensure that all stakeholders involved with this venture have an opportunity to share in the potential economic and social benefits that may be derived from any significant discoveries made."
About the Grand Council of the Crees (Eeyou Istchee)
The Grand Council of the Crees (Eeyou Istchee) is the political body that represents the approximately 18,000 Crees or "Eeyouch" ("Eenouch"). The Council is constituted of twenty (20) members including: the Grand Chief and Deputy-Grand Chief elected at large by the Eeyouch, the chiefs elected by each of the nine (9) recognized Cree communities, and one (1) other representative elected by each community.
About the Cree Regional Authority
The Cree Regional Authority (CRA), set up by virtue of the signing of the James Bay and Northern Québec Agreement as the administrative body of the Cree Nation Government, is responsible for environmental protection, the hunting, fishing and trapping regime, economic and community development, Cree governance and other matters as decided by the Board of Directors. The Board of Directors of the CRA is the same joint governing body that manages the Grand Council of the Crees and is referred to as the "Council/Board".
About the Cree Nation of Oujé-Bougoumou
Oujé-Bougoumou is the newest of the Cree First Nations in Eeyou Istchee having been constructed during the first half of the 1990's. After many years of negotiations, Oujé-Bougoumou was recently incorporated formally into the James Bay and Northern Quebec Agreement. In the course of the construction of Oujé-Bougoumou the community enjoyed national and international recognition for its community development efforts including recognition from the United Nations and participation in Expo2000.
SOURCE: Grand Council of the Crees (Eeyou Istchee)
For further information:
Andy Baribeau, GCC(EI)/CRA, Tel.: (514) 770-7743
Deputy Chief Randy Bosum, Oujé-Bougoumou Cree Nation, Tel.: (418) 745-2519