Maori Party fights to protect Treaty settlements
Maori Party fights to protect Treaty settlements under ETS
Te Ururoa Flavell, Treaty Issues spokesperson 10 September 2008
The Maori Party invoked the recommital procedure in a last-ditch effort to protect the integrity of treaty settlements, threatened by the Emissions Trading Scheme.
Party Whip, Te Ururoa Flavell, moved that the Emissions Trading Scheme Bill be recommitted or referred back to the Committee of the Whole House stage, so that the fundamental matters raised by Ngai Tahu could be reconsidered before the Bill is passed into law.
Recommittal involves asking the Parliament to go back one last time to look at issues that may not have been properly addressed during the debate.
“Ngai Tahu believe they have been prejudiced because, at the time of their settlement negotiations, the government knew but the iwi didn’t, how the ETS would affect their forestry land claims,” said Mr Flavell.
“Ngai Tahu asked if the Bill could be amended to ensure that Treaty settlements are not devalued by the ETS. They wanted a Treaty protection clause included in the Bill to cover the specific situation faced by Ngai Tahu and other iwi who reached settlements before the ETS was unveiled,” he said.
“The intentions of Ngai Tahu were honourable and the Maori Party was more than happy to support their initiative.”
“This vote will influence the Maori Party in its decision-making, post-election.”
“This decision, preventing the opportunity for further dialogue on such a critical bill, has taken opposition to the Treaty to a new level. The government is allowing a clear injustice to continue, when they had a chance to fix it. And sadly, National has supported them,” Mr Flavell said.