TORONTO, Sept. 16 – Marten Falls First Nation and WebequieFirst Nation announced today that both communities have signed aRelationship Protocol with each other. The two Chiefs of the FirstNations also signed a Letter of Intent with the two Ministers ofMinistry of Northern, Mines, and Forestry and Ministry of NaturalResources.
The Relationship Protocol was signed by Chief Moonias of Marten FallsFirst Nation and Chief Wabasse of Webequie First Nation. The purpose ofthe Relationship Protocol is to begin joint discussions andcollaborative planning on how to minimize impacts and maximize benefitsfor their community members within their adjacent traditionalterritories where the Ring of Fire mineral discoveries are located.
The Relationship Protocol reinforces the reality that companies andgovernments have to directly engage, consult, and accommodate the mostdirectly affected First Nation communities. The Relationship Protocolbegins to address issues and opportunities associated with the potentialmine site and that the Chief Moonias and Chief Wabasse encourage theother regional First Nations to discuss how they will work together onregional infrastructure.
A Letter of Intent was also signed today by Chief Moonias of MartenFalls First Nation and Chief Wabasse of Webequie First Nation as well asMinister Jeffery and Minister Gravelle. The Letter of Intent supportsthat position that the directly impacted communities need to buildrelationships, build consensus, and build capacity at the local level.
Chief Cornelius Wabasse of Webequie First Nations stated “I am veryhappy to come together with Marten Falls First Nation as neighbours inthe Ring of Fire and seek to create a positive framework ofunderstanding for our communities. I look forward to working with MNR &MNDMF in addressing issues and providing support for our communitiesassociated with the Ring of Fire opportunities and community-basedland-use planning.”
Chief Eli Moonias of Marten Falls First Nation stated: “I am gladMarten Falls First Nation and Webequie First Nation are on the journeyto establishing a community-based process in resolving the differencesin overlapping traditional territories. Hopefully, we can begin dialoguewith our other neighbours in this same fashion.”