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Foreshore and Seabed Legal Nonsense

Foreshore and Seabed Legal Nonsense

Monday 18 Aug 2003 Richard Prebble Press Releases -- Other

The government foreshore and seabed decision is legal nonsense ACT Leader Richard Prebble said today.

"As a lawyer I can say it is absurd for the government to attempt to get out of the foreshore and seabed issue by claiming that no one owns it. Yes they do. And what is not clear is whether the owner is going to be Crown or Maori. That issue will only be settled once we know what is meant by customary rights.

"Everyone realises that the foreshore and seabed issue raises some very difficult problems but the government pronouncement has just added to the confusion. As Harry Truman observed, "The buck stops here" and the Labour government has failed in its duty to take some clear decisions.

"Government has attempted to please everyone and I think succeeded in offending everyone. There is no way that the government will be able to sustain this gobbledygook. The crown will be forced to clarify what it means by statements like "public domain", "customary interests for whanau" and "certainty" - on behalf of all present and future generations.

"The details of this package will cause it to unwrap and with it the government. " Mr Prebble said.


For more information visit ACT online at or contact the ACT Parliamentary Office at

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