Stewart out, confusion in

Posted: May 10, 2007 in Caledonia, Corruption, DCE, Land claims, McGuinty, Natives

Ontario residents can be forgiven if they’re confused about the province’s approach to the Caledonia land claim negotiations. The departure of Jane Stewart from the negotiating table Monday will do little to reduce the fog. Ontario’s governing Liberals – and Premier Dalton McGuinty, in particular – have repeatedly said the province cannot resolve the Six Nations land claim that led to the 15-month occupation of Douglas Creek Estates, while at the same time paying Stewart a well-publicized $1,300 a day to represent them.

David Ramsay, Ontario’s minister responsible for aboriginal affairs, said Stewart will be replaced by Murray Coolican. This is the same David Ramsay who said last week he would explore bringing in a mediator to try to settle the dispute. That sounded at the time like an admission that the costly negotiation process wasn’t working.

The same Premier Dalton McGuinty who has been saying that only the federal government can resolve land claims like Caledonia declared Tuesday that Ottawa is in a conflict of interest when it comes to resolving land claims…

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