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Agreement in Principle signed with Rangitāne o Wairarapa

Agreement in Principle signed with Rangitāne o Wairarapa and Rangitāne o Tamaki Nui-ā-Rua


The Crown has signed an Agreement in Principle to settle historical Treaty of Waitangi claims with Rangitāne o Wairarapa and Rangitāne o Tamaki Nui-ā-Rua, Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Minister Christopher Finlayson announced today.

“Rangitāne o Wairarapa and Rangitāne o Tamaki Nui-ā-Rua are virtually landless today due to the actions and omissions of the Crown. As a result, since the nineteenth century, they have struggled to maintain their identity and connection with their own land and cultural traditions,” he said.

The Agreement in Principle sets out a broad redress package to settle the historical Treaty of Waitangi claims of the iwi and includes financial redress of $32.5 million and the transfer of seven Crown owned sites of cultural significance to the iwi.

“This agreement will help acknowledge the injustices of the past and restore the relationship between the Crown and Rangitāne o Wairarapa and Rangitāne o Tamaki Nui-ā-Rua. It will also assist the iwi to rebuild their economic base, cultural strength and identity,” Mr Finlayson said.

Under the agreement, Pukaha Mount Bruce Wildlife Centre Reserve and Scenic Reserve will be transferred to the iwi who will then gift the areas back to the Crown and the people of New Zealand. Pukaha Mount Bruce is the last substantial remnant of the great forest Te Tapere Nui o Whātonga (Seventy Mile Bush) which once covered much of northern Wairarapa and the Tamaki Nui-ā-Rua districts. It is spiritually and culturally significant to Rangitāne o Wairarapa and Rangitāne o Tamaki Nui-ā-Rua.

The Crown and Rangitāne o Wairarapa and Rangitāne o Tamaki Nui-ā-Rua will now begin negotiations towards a deed of settlement, which will set out the redress in detail. Once a draft of the deed of settlement is completed, members of Rangitāne o Wairarapa and Rangitāne o Tamaki Nui-ā-Rua will have the opportunity to ratify it. If ratified, the deed of settlement will be signed and legislation introduced into Parliament to implement the settlement.
A copy of the Agreement in Principle is available on the Office of Treaty Settlements’ website www.ots.govt.nz

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