President of Metis Nation Saskatchewan, Glen McCallum, said it starts the path of reconciliation, and helps foster Metis agency.
“I would like to see a legislative building here. The lands that we have are straight across, I believe, from the historic site across the river. I’d like to see the old ferry that used to be there previously,” said McCallum.
Dan Vandal, the minister responsible for Prairies Economic Development Canada, made the announcement during the 50th anniversary of the Back to Batoche Festival, a celebration of Metis culture and history.
“The significance of Batoche to our Metis ancestors who lived and flourished and fought here, whose descendants have returned to commemorate their resistance and to celebrate their resilience year after year, is something we feel deep in our bones,” said Vandal.
People attending the festival saw this as a welcome move.
The transfer comes on the same weekend the Pope begins his visit to Canada to apologize for residential schools.