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Millennia Of Misery Over Treaty Grievances

Media Release

20 February 2002

Millennia Of Misery Over Treaty Grievances

New Zealand First has accused the Labour-led Government of sentencing ordinary New Zealanders to more than 3,000 years of misery over processing Treaty claims.

At the present rate of progress, the Treaty gravy train will run for approximately 3,000 years, and cost taxpayers $45 billion in processing costs alone without taking into account the cost of settlements, Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters claimed today.

“The Government is leaving future generations of New Zealanders a legacy of guilt and an astronomical burden of debt and it is doubtful whether any Maori at the bottom of the heap will ever get a brass razoo.”

Mr Peters questioned the Treaty Negotiations Minister Margaret Wilson in Parliament today about the long delays and the high cost of settling nearly 1,000 claims. Only 9 had been settled in the past 28 years.

“To place this time frame in a historical perspective, 3,000 years takes us back roughly to the time of Kings Saul, David and Solomon. It is therefore clearly a grievance process that can never be given full closure and will lead inevitably to New Zealand’s social and economic self-destruction.

“Generation after generation will be saddled with this agony while the gravy train industry bankrupts them.”

Mr Peters said that Maori would only start really achieving when they emerged from the grievance cloud shrouding New Zealand.


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