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Manitoba did not fully consult First Nations on the work of the flood channel, the judge's rule

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The Canadian Press

Canadian news agency

Winnipeg — A judge in Manitoba has determined that the state was unable to adequately consult the indigenous community as part of a planned flood control project.

Queen's Bench Court Judge Glenn Joyal is constitutionally consulting with indigenous people near Lake St. Martin, where the state plans to build two channels to mitigate risk. It states that it has not fulfilled its obligations. Of the flood.

As part of the preparatory work, the Manitoba State Government issued a right-of-way permit to the royal territory in 2019, allowing engineers to carry out groundwater monitoring and other activities.

The Interlake Reserve Tribal Council, which includes six communities in the region, said there was no discussion prior to logging and other work.

Manitoba lawyers argued that the state began discussions with indigenous peoples and that liquidation was part of a broader consultation process on the project.

However, Joyal has determined that the liquidation and other work carried out under the permission of 2019 has not been properly communicated in advance.

"Until and shortly after the issuance of the permit, Manitoba allowed the applicant, but did not do so in a meaningful way," Joyal announced Thursday. I wrote in his decision.

The government only notified two of the four affected indigenous communities in advance about the permit work, which was emailed during the 2018 Christmas holidays. it was done.

"The Christmas email did not say that it would take only 7 business days to provide an answer before the permit was issued."

Joyal said Rejected a second claim by indigenous peoples regarding inadequate consultations on the license granted to build an access road leading to the area. He wrote that the government followed appropriate procedures and was within the right to dismiss the license appeal.

The court battle is part of a larger controversy over a $ 600 million flood control project that looks at two waterways built to drain high water from Lake Manitoba and Lake St. Martin to Lake Winnipeg. is. The Lake St. Martin area was hit by a severe flood in 2011, leaving thousands of people out of their homes.

The project has not yet been approved because Ottawa's environmental regulators have questioned whether the Manitoba state government has done enough to address the concerns of indigenous peoples.

This report by Canadian Press was first published on June 23, 2022