THUNDER BAY – “Our government takes KI’s concerns about land and resources very seriously,” states Michael Gravelle, the Minister of Northern Development, Mines and Forestry. “Ontario respects Aboriginal and treaty rights and is committed to meeting the province’s constitutional and other obligations in respect of Aboriginal peoples”.
Gravelle’s comments come in response to the Referendum results from the Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwugi First Nation. Ninety-six per cent of the people supported two resolutions directing the Chief and Council on protecting water and resources on the First Nation’s traditional lands.
“We are committed to a meaningful relationship with KI and are hopeful that we will continue to move forward with the community, strengthening our relationship based on mutual respect and co-operation,” condluded Gravelle.
The First Nation has engaged in efforts to protect its traditional lands in the past, six band members including Chief Donny Morris were jailed in 2008 over efforts to protect their lands in a dispute with Platinex, a mining company.