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Premier and Aboriginal leaders meet to continue planning for devolution

YELLOWKNIFE (March 11, 2014) – Premier Bob McLeod met with leaders of the Aboriginal parties to the Devolution Agreement on Friday, March 7th to continue building their relationship in anticipation of devolution. He and Robert Alexie Jr., President of the Gwich’in Tribal Council; Ethel Blondin-Andrew, Chairperson of the Sahtu Secretariat Incorporated; Eddie Erasmus, Grand Chief of the Tłı̨chǫ Government; and Wally Schumann, President of the Hay River Métis Government Council representing the Northwest Territory Métis Nation, discussed resource-revenue sharing, the Intergovernmental Council and regional recruitment. Nellie Cournoyea, Chair and CEO of the Inuvialuit Regional Corporation, was unable to attend.

“The GNWT’s role in land management will change on April 1, but our relationships with Aboriginal governments will continue to be based on the principles of respect, recognition, and responsibility,” said Premier McLeod. “Together, we will ensure land and resource management policies and practices across the Northwest Territories are economically robust, mutually supportive and reflect northern priorities like sustainable land use and environmental protection.”

“The Inuvialuit Regional Corporation is looking forward to this new stage in working with the GNWT to develop intergovernmental relations for land and resource management,” Chair and CEO Cournoyea said from Inuvik.

“The NWTMN’s strong support of the GNWT’s efforts to achieve and successfully implement the devolution agreement is reflective of our belief in the power of partnership,” said President Schumann. “This meeting is another good example of the strong and respectful relationship that exists between us and the GNWT.”

“The SSI looks forward to participating on the Intergovernmental Council,” added Chairperson Blondin-Andrew. “This participation will ensure that the Sahtu are involved in the management of public lands and resources in our settlement area. Our involvement will ensure that these public lands and resources will continue to be managed in a manner that reflects Sahtu values and priorities.”

“The Intergovernmental Council and the sharing of the net fiscal benefit mark a new era in the long and distinguished history of the NWT,” said President Alexie. “The GTC looks forward to working with our devolution partners to make these agreements a success.”

“Devolution gives opportunity for northern governments to work better together as we manage our respective lands and resources,” said Grand Chief Erasmus. “We look forward to working together through the Intergovernmental Council established through devolution and harmonizing Tłı̨chǫ land management with the GNWT. This meeting is another good example how the Tłı̨chǫ Government, the GNWT and our Aboriginal government partners can and will work constructively together.”

The Intergovernmental Council will be guided by the Northwest Territories Intergovernmental Agreement on Land and Resource Management, and resource revenues will be shared according to the Northwest Territories Intergovernmental Resource Revenue Sharing Agreement, both signed in February 2014.  Working together, Northerners will responsibly and sustainably manage the lands, waters and natural resources of the Northwest Territories for the benefit of current and future generations.

For more information, contact:

Shaun Dean
Press Secretary
Government of the Northwest Territories

Bob Simpson
Director, Intergovernmental Relations
Inuvialuit Regional Corporation

Earl Jacobson
Executive Director
Northwest Territory Métis Nation

David Little
Executive Director
Sahtu Secretariat Incorporated

Fred Koe
Chief Operating Officer
Gwich’in Tribal Council

Marjorie Matheson Maund
Implementation Facilitator
Tłı̨chǫ Government



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