Article by Solomon Israel, Winnipeg Free Press
Two more Manitoba First Nations have joined forces with medical cannabis clinic operator National Access Cannabis, announcing plans to open recreational cannabis stores on their land after legalization.
Nisichawayasihk Cree Nation and Brokenhead Ojibway Nation announced their agreements with National Access Cannabis (NAC) on Thursday and Friday, respectively. Opaskwayak Cree Nation, Long Plain First Nation and Peguis First Nation had announced retail agreements with NAC last Friday.
National Access Cannabis is one of a number of companies that have responded to Manitoba’s request for proposals (RFP) to operate retail cannabis stores in the province after the expected federal legalization of cannabis next year. The government of Manitoba will choose up to four companies to run those stores. The RFP, which had a Friday deadline, sought the participation of Indigenous businesses.
Nisichawayasihk plans to open a store on its Mystery Lake urban reserve land in Thompson, Chief Marcel Moody said.
“It’s a chance for our community to diversify our economic development portfolio,” said Moody. That portfolio, he said, already includes grocery stores in Thompson, The Pas and Nelson House, as well the Mystery Lake Motor Hotel in Thompson.