Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Foreshore law shuts non-Maori out of the court

National Party Deputy Leader

14 April 2004

Foreshore law shuts non-Maori out of the court

The Labour Government's double standards are alive and well in the seabed and foreshore policy unveiled last week, says National's Deputy Leader, Gerry Brownlee.

"The Bill denies non-Maori the opportunity to object to Maori claims of ancestral connection coming before the Maori Land Court, effectively shutting them out of the Maori Land Court decision-making process," he says.

"The Maori Land Court will have the power to grant Maori special rights of 'ancestral connection' over virtually the entire coast, but under Labour's plans, non-Maori will have to work much harder to get the chance to put their side of the story to the court.

"While Maori applicants are automatically entitled to representation before the Maori Land Court, a non-Maori objector would have to prove that he or she 'has an interest in the proceeding that is different from an interest in common with the public generally'. - (Schedule 1, cl 13(c), page 54).

"That's two standards of representation.

"The Bill also says 'if no objections are received to an application, the Maori Land Court must make an order... if it is satisfied it is entitled to do so under [the relevant statutory test].' (cl 54(2), page 27)'.

"In other words, in the absence of objections, the court can tick the boxes and make the requested order without a public hearing.

"So the effect is that if you are non-Maori you can't object, giving the Maori Land Court free rein to rubber stamp claims of ancestral connection. Meanwhile the few non-Maori able to apply for customary rights orders (cl 58, page 28) will be forced to do so through the High Court, a much tougher test, when Maori take their cases through the Maori Land Court (cl 37, page 21).

"This makes a mockery of claims that all New Zealanders have equal rights under this proposed legislation," says Mr Brownlee.

"It's further proof that Labour's framework for 'Crown ownership' is nothing more than a sham designed to appease the majority of its Maori caucus."


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Werewolf: What Does Winston Peters Want His Legacy To Be?

A lot of people in New Zealand seem to resent Winston Peters and the power that he appears to have. “Appears” being the operative word. In reality, Peters will have power only up to the point that he uses it.

By next week, he’ll have become just another junior player in an MMP governing arrangement, battling to hold onto the gains he was promised. More>>


Rising Toll: Road Safety Needs To Be A Higher Priority

Official advice released to the Green Party under the Official Information Act shows that the previous National Government dismissed an option to make road safety its most important transport priority after being told the road toll was rising. More>>


Wellington.Scoop: Arrests At Blockade Of "Weapons Expo"

“We encourage people in Wellington to get down to the Westpac Stadium now for a day of awesome peace action. There will be plenty of food, music and activities to keep us sustained through the day.” More>>


Rorschach Restructuring: PSA Taking Inland Revenue To Court Over Psychometrics

The Public Service Association will be seeing Inland Revenue in Employment Court over its intention to psychometrically test employees reapplying for their roles at the department as part of its controversial Business Transformation restructuring plan. More>>


Nuclear Disarmament: Nobel Peace Prize 2017 Awarded To ICAN

Congratulations from iCAN Aotearoa New Zealand to international iCAN, the other iCAN national campaigns and partner organisations, and the countless organisations and individuals who have worked so hard for a nuclear weapons-free world since 1945. More>>


Expenses: Waikato DHB CEO Resigns

An independent inquiry has identified that Dr Murray had spent more than the agreed $25K allocated for relocation costs, and other unauthorized expenses involving potential financial breaches of the chief executive’s obligations. More>>


Wellington.Scoop: Sad About The Trolley Buses?

The Regional Council’s MetLink is today spending money to tell us that it really loves Wellington’s trolley buses, even though they’re all being taken off our roads by the end of this month. More>>


Post-Election: Preliminary Coalition Talks Begin

New Zealand First will hold post-election preliminary discussions in Wellington with the National Party tomorrow morning and the Labour Party tomorrow afternoon. More>>




Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election