May 9, 1911 (11th Parliament, 3rd Session)


Frank Oliver (Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)



It depends on circumstances. If the settlers have gone upon the reservation after it was declared a reservation, then they are not recognized as having any right, and are subject to summary Mr. OLIVER.
removal. But if there are settlers now in legitimate occupation of land covered by a reservation at the time the reservation is declared, then of course they are dealt with on the basis of that right, whatever it may be. There is no intention or desire on the part of the government to interfere unduly with any man's right. But if parliament, in its wisdom, sanctions the action of the government in setting apart a certain reservation, and if, in pursuance of the purpose of parliament, it becomes necessary to clear that area of settlers, then of course that clearance must be effected, always having due regard to the value of the rights of the settlers. If a man has a right, and it is the will of parliament that he shall not retain that right, then he must be compensated.

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