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Flavell Pleased to see LandCorp Sale Under Review

Thursday 30 March 2006 Te Ururoa Flavell

Member for Waiariki Pleased to see LandCorp Sale Under Review

Member for Waiariki, Te Ururoa Flavell, today expressed relief at the response of State Owned Enterprise Minister, Trevor Mallard, who told the House that he "wouldn't count on a non-Maori owner doing that development just yet".

Te Ururoa Flavell was contacted by claimants this week, who were concerned about the purported sale by Land Corp of the Taurewa Sheep Station on State Highway 49.

The land involved is in the Tawhai North and Okahukura seven Maori Land blocks.

Tawhai North was taken by the Crown in 1913 as a defence training ground. The Okahukura and Tawhai land blocks went to the Native Land Court at Taupo in February and March 1886 for title awards. The farm block is in an area which was shared by hapu of Whanganui, Hikairo and Tuwharetoa.

"I was of course concerned that this land was being considered in the first place. The Turangi Report (Waitangi Tribunal) guides us that it would be a breach of article two of the Treaty if Mäori Land was taken for public works without considering whether other land could properly have been used instead" stated Mr Flavell.

It would appear that there were other options for a defence training area - as this land was never required for that purpose.

"I also considered that the land should have been offered back to the owners when the Government decided it would not be required for defence purposes - instead of being partly transferred to Tongariro National Party and the department which eventually became LandCorp" said Mr Flavell.

"Finally, we considered it highly unusual that a sale was made just at the same time as the Waitangi Tribunal inquiring into the National Party area was meeting at the Chateau" stated Mr Flavell.

The Maori Party welcomes the response of Minister Mallard, and will be watching the case with great interest.

Questions asked by Te Ururoa Flavell of Minister for State Owned Enterprises

1. Ki tana whakapono, e tika ana mä te Kaporeihana Whenua e hoko te whenua, ara he whenua i murua ra i te hunga Maori hei pa tüwatawata; ki tetahi tangata tumataiti mënä ae, he aha ai, mënä käo, he aha ai hoki? [Does he believe it is appropriate for LandCorp to sell land that was taken from Maori for defence purposes; and then transferred from LandCorp to a private owner; and if not, why not?]

2. What consultation took place with the hapu of Tuwharetoa, Hikairo and Whanganui about the sale by Land Corp of the Taurewa Sheep Station, which is part of the Tawhai North and Okahukura Seven Maori Land Blocks taken by the Crown in 1913 as a Defence Training Ground?

3. Did the Minister not think it unusual that the land was advertised for sale, a week prior to hearings of the Waitangi Tribunal Inquiry into the National Park taking place at the Chateau, which is only 5km away from the Taurewa Station?

4. Why has the protective mechanism for surplus Crown land failed to protect the surplus LandCorp Property at Taurewa, particularly the possibility of landbanking this property?

5. Is the Minister aware that land taken during WWII for a military airfield at Raglan was turned into a golf course in 1969, and resulted in massive dispute for the people of Tainui Awhiro led by Eva Rickard; and does he not think it ironic that the Taurewa Station is also being sold for the purposes of developing a golf course and grand apartments?

ENDS

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