November 21, 2023
For Immediate Release
Nunatsiavut President Johannes Lampe has informed Newfoundland and Labrador Premier Andrew Furey that he will not be participating in today’s Premier-Indigenous Leaders Roundtable, as well as future meetings, due to the inclusion of the NunatuKavut Community Council (NCC), a group whose claim as a section 35 Indigenous collective has not been proven and which is rejected by First Nations, Métis and Inuit.
“We had hoped to engage in productive and meaningful dialogue with the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador regarding the issues affecting Labrador Inuit, but we will not do so while the Province continues to acknowledge and support a group pretending to be something they are not,” writes President Lampe in a letter sent to Premier Furey.
The inclusion of the NCC in the roundtable undermines the credibility and integrity of the process and the voices being represented, says President Lampe, adding that the NCC is falsely claiming Inuit status and making illegitimate land claims that overlap with the Labrador Inuit Land Claims Agreement.
The Nunatsiavut Government will not participate in any discussions that involve the NCC until the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador re-evaluates its decision and respects the rights and interests of the Labrador Inuit, adds the President.
“If the Premier is truly committed to reconciliation and to establishing an environment of collaboration with Indigenous Peoples, then he will take our concerns seriously and re-evaluate his decision to include a group that is falsely claiming Indigeneity and making illegitimate land claims,” says the President.
The Premier-Indigenous Leaders Roundtable is a forum for dialogue and collaboration between the provincial government and Indigenous leaders in Newfoundland and Labrador.
Media Contact: Bert Pomeroy, Director of Communications (709) 896-8582