OTTAWA — A Quebec First Nation has reached an agreement to settle 29 claims with the federal government and receive $116 million.

The federal government also says it has signed a memorandum of understanding with Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg First Nation to guide how the two sides will partner to work on issues including the recognition of rights, socio-economic development and self-determination.

Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg First Nation is located near the Quebec municipality of Maniwaki, about 130 kilometres north of Ottawa, with more than 3,400 members.

The members of the First Nation accepted a settlement for 29 claims within the town of Maniwaki and can request that 363 acres of land could be added to the reserve as part of the settlement, or approximately the size of 180 soccer fields.

Indigenous-Crown Relations Minister Carolyn Bennett says in a statement the announcement marks an important step to strengthen the relationship between the federal government and the community.

In the same release, Frankie Cote, a band councillor with Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg, said the settlement and agreement closes a chapter in the community’s history.

“Together, we are moving away from the past where extinguishing rights was a requirement and moving on a path where we take our rightful place as an equal partner with Canada,” Cote said.

The Canadian Press

The Canadian Press