Moricetown Band indicates support for LNG benefits deals

A Wet'suwet'en chief has indicated the Moricetown Band wants to allow LNG development in exchange for financial benefits.

A Wet’suwet’en chief has indicated the Moricetown Band wants to allow LNG development on traditional land in exchange for financial benefits.

In an invitation to a community meeting tomorrow, Moricetown chief Barry Nikal said the band wanted to support other First Nations who had already signed on to receive payments and other opportunities through individual LNG deals.

Citing the First Nations Group Limited Partnership (FNLP) associated with Chevron’s Pacific Trails pipeline as an example, he said Moricetown could gain cash payments and priority access to jobs and skills training by signing that agreement.

We want to stand strong with the other 15 First Nations, including the four Wet’suwet’en bands who have already entered that agreement,” Chief Nikal said.

More than anything, I wish to see unity within our Wet’suwet’en Nation and strongly believe we can work together towards a future of prosperity and wellbeing for our people.”

At tomorrow’s meeting, chiefs will outline the Band’s decision-making process and ongoing negotiations to “possibly enter agreements with regards to LNG”.

The invitation says band members at the meeting will gain an understanding of the full range of benefits that can be made available to them through participation in LNG projects.

As an elected chief councillor, I have a mandate to support the well-being of our band members,” Nikal said.

“It is important that membership understands why our council and some of the Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs have been negotiating over the past year to enter these agreements.”

Wet’suwet’en leaders signed a benefits agreement with the province for TransCanada’s Coastal Gaslink pipeline in December.

A spokesperson for Moricetown Band said no agreements had been made but proposals would be presented at tomorrow’s meeting.

The community meeting will be held at 5 p.m. at the Moricetown Multiplex. Dinner will be provided.