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Former area MP Bill McKnight dead at 79

McKnight served as the area MP for the riding which encompassed parts of Battleford, Kindersley, Moose Jaw, Saskatoon, Swift Current, Maple Creek and, of course, Biggar, having been elected in 1979.
He won further federal elections in 1980, 1984 and 1988 until 1993. In his time in office, he served as Minister of Agriculture, Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development, Minister of National Defence during the first Gulf War, Minister of Energy, Mines and Resources and Minister of Labour in the Progressive Conservative government of Brian Mulroney.
He was Saskatchewan’s third treaty commissioner, and while in the role (2007-2012), McKnight added a Kindergarten to Grade 12 treaty resource guide to provincial school curriculum.
He played a major part in the creation of the 1992 Saskatchewan Treaty Land Entitlement Framework Agreement, which identified 2.5 million acres of land to enhance economic opportunities for First Nations in the province.
McKnight was appointed to the Saskatchewan Order of Merit, and was also honorary chief of the Muskeg Lake Cree Nation. A 36-acre parcel of commercial land in Saskatoon was named after McKnight by the Muskeg Lake Cree Nation in recognition of his role in creating federal policy for Land Claims Settlements. It is known as the McKnight Commercial Centre.
McKnight died Friday, October 4 after a sudden illness.