FSIN Urges Tories To Back Up Talk On Land Claims

Monday, May 29, 2006 at 13:32



A vice-chief with the Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations says it is clear the federal government is going to have to get serious with the issue of land claims.


Lawrence Joseph feels the recent dispute in Caledonia, Ontario is an example of what Indian people can do if they are frustrated enough.


Joseph says the present system allows Ottawa to essentially decide what land First Nations are owed, and how much they should settle for.


He says an independent body should do the job.


He adds the adoption of Bill C-6 would have been a good solution to the problem.


It called for a settlement group of First Nations and federal officials to validate and cost-settle each claim.


However, the bill died in parliament due to an election call.


Joseph also says the minister responsible Jim Prentice spoke out against the current system while he was part of the Opposition.


According to Joseph, both Prentice and Saskatoon MP Maurice Vellacott once said the issue should be handled independently.


Joseph wants to see what the two will do now that they are in government.