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Govt must learn to share with Taranaki iwi

Tariana Turia
MP for Te Tai Hauauru
22 December 2010

Govt must learn to share with Taranaki iwi

The Maori Party says it is outrageous that tangata whenua in Taranaki who belong to land, that is rich in minerals, are struggling to make ends meet while the wealth beneath them is sent overseas and to Wellington.

And that is just one logical reason why the Government should heed the recommendations in a petroleum management report released by the Waitangi Tribunal today, said Tariana Turia, MP for Te Tai Hauauru.

"We welcome the report because it contests whether the Crown should have the right to continue taking and not giving anything meaningful back to nga hapu o Ngaruahine.

"Last century, tangata whenua in Taranaki were made to watch others create economic opportunities for themselves by taking their land and unfortunately we are still seeing that happen today.”

Over the past 10 years, companies have made profits of more than $6.9 billion from petroleum in Taranaki. About 20 percent of that profit has been given to the Crown as a royalty payment.

According to the New Zealand Deprivation Index, more than 50% of Taranaki suburbs and areas are deprived, with the following areas, where there are significant Maori populations, being some of the highest on the deprivation scale: Waitara, Marfell, Kaponga, Waitotara, Patea, Waverly, Opunake and Manaia.

Almost half (41%) of Maori adults in Taranaki are without work.

"There really should be no poverty in Taranaki.

"The Government can change this – take away the pockets of poverty in the region by showing it has the political will to share."


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