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Feds, Lake Manitoba First Nation make progress in flood protection talks

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Derek Nepinak  said in a release today, 'It is saddened that the government needs to be threatened with a blockade.'

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Derek Nepinak said in a release today, 'It is saddened that the government needs to be threatened with a blockade.'

A planned blockade of a provincial highway has been called off following meeting between Lake Manitoba First Nation and the Federal government over the weekend.

Officials with Lake Manitoba First Nation were in discussions with the Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development over concerns surrounding continued flooding in the area. The community, which is situated on the northeast shore of the south basin of Lake Manitoba, was looking for assurances from Ottawa that suitable long-term flood protection would be put in place to protect the residents.

Lake Manitoba had organized a blockade of Highway 68 if progress wasn’t made in the talks.

While no deal was announced, officials were satisfied with the response from Aboriginal Affairs to the point where they’ve cancelled the July 1 blockade.

"It is saddened that the government needs to be threatened with a blockade to hear the voices of First Nations leadership to resolve outstanding issues," offered Grand Chief Derek Nepinak in a release. "The resolution that was reached today demonstrates the willingness of the Chief and Council of Lake Manitoba First Nation to work with the federal and provincial government to find preventive measures for natural disasters before they are predicated."

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