Minister welcomes progress on Mauao Transfer
Hon Parekura Horomia
Minister of Mäori Affairs
20 April 2006 Media Statement
Minister welcomes progress on Mauao (Mt Maunganui) Transfer
The Minister of Māori Affairs, Hon Parekura Horomia today announced that the government is prepared to proceed with the transfer of Mauao to the Tauranga Moana iwi and Waitaha.
The Crown has agreed that the landmark mountain Mauao (Mt Maunganui) be returned to the local iwi and a formal voting process was set in motion with the initialling of an Agreement to Transfer at a ceremony today.
The agreement acknowledges the deep historical and traditional relationship of the iwi to the maunga, and is not part of a Treaty settlement.
The next step is now with local iwi who will vote to ratify any agreement.
Ngāti Pukenga, Ngāti Ranginui, Ngāi Te Rangi and Waitaha (the iwi with a traditional link to the mountain) will vote on whether the Crown’s proposal should be accepted before a final decision on a transfer can take place. If the iwi ratify agreement then new legislation will be needed to effect the transfer.
Under the proposal, the Tauranga City Council will continue to manage the reserve as it presently does. The public’s rights to access and use the maunga will continue unaffected.
Hon Parekura Horomia says he is pleased that his government has acknowledged the special significance of this issue to the iwi of Tauranga Moana and Waitaha and looks forward to a positive outcome from the voting process.
He says, ‘I acknowledge the work and dedication of the local iwi in reaching this important milestone with the Crown.’