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Maori Caucus endorses Great Barrier decision

23 May 2008 Media Statement

Labour Maori Caucus endorses Jim Anderton's decision at Great Barrier Island

The Labour Maori Caucus has endorsed Fisheries' Minister Jim Anderton’s recent rejection of a marine reserve at Aotea (Great Barrier Island), said Chairperson Dave Hereora.

“A Large part of life on Aotea for local Iwi Ngati Rehua and Ngati Wai relies on access to the moana (the sea) for the gathering of kai moana and fishing-related tourism.”

The proposed marine reserve was to cover a massive section, around 435 kilometres, on the Northeast of Great Barrier Island.

“Jim Anderton’s move to decline an application for a marine reserve at Great Barrier Island needs to be acknowledged as a great move," said Mr Hereora

“The Minister has taken Iwi rights into consideration, and this has been fully recognised and welcomed by Labour's Maori caucus.

“He has taken into account the loss of fishing interests and traditions local Iwi would suffer if a marine reserve was to go ahead.

“Creating a marine reserve at Aotea would have limited the ability of Iwi to manage areas of Aotea by traditional means, excluding them from some of their traditional fishing grounds and sacred grounds.

“For all these reasons we support the decision made by the Minister of Fisheries and applaud the support of hapü, Iwi and residents of Great Barrier Island,” he said.


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