AMC Responds to MMF Legal Challenge of Canada’s Agreement on Kapyong Barracks
October 31, 2019
Treaty One Territory, Manitoba
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 30, 2019
Treaty 1 Territory, Manitoba – The Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs (AMC) Chiefs-in-Assembly passed a resolution today to apply for intervenor status in response to the Manitoba Metis Federation’s (MMF) application for judicial review in Federal Court in respect of the government of Canada’s decision to enter into various arrangements and agreements with Treaty 1 First Nations to transfer up to 222 acres of federal Crown lands that include the Kapyong Barracks.
The MMF has asked a federal judge to terminate an order setting aside or quashing the decision for Canada to enter in the agreement with Treaty 1 First Nations and any agreements related to it; and a declaration that Canada breached the honour of the Crown on the basis that the federal government did not adequately consult with the MMF.
In the fall of 2002, Canada declared the Department of National Defence Kapyong Barracks surplus property. Under the Framework Agreement – Treaty Land Entitlement (Framework Agreement or TLE Agreement), Canada was obligated to provide notice of the availability of surplus land and an estimate of fair market value to Brokenhead Ojibway Nation (“BON”). Canada failed to do so. Canada took the position that the Kapyong land was “strategic surplus” and thus not covered under the Framework Agreement. Treaty 1 First Nations immediately took action challenging Canada’s decision and thus began 16 years of legal wrangling, negotiations and court decisions which culminated in a Comprehensive Settlement Agreement (“CSA”) with respect to the disposition of 68% of the Kapyong lands to Treaty 1 First Nations, which CSA was signed on August 30, 2019.
AMC Grand Chief Arlen Dumas said, “We strongly support our Treaty 1 Chiefs who worked long and hard to secure this land for our First Nations citizens; a deal that was struck with Ottawa to acquire the land based on unfulfilled Treaty Land Entitlement. First Nations hold the inherent and legal rights to land in Manitoba, and the Métis are not entitled to interfere in any land settlement reached with the federal government. Attempting to stall the process is unnecessary and frivolous and we are prepared to counter any intervention in this, and any other land deals.”