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Grey Power Release On The Sea Bed and Foreshore

Media Release

23rd July 2003

Grey Power President Graham Stairmand urges The Government;

Not to put the issue of ownership of “The Sea Bed and Foreshore “ On the Back Burner’’

Referring to the Prime Ministers recent statement on the issue

The National President expressed Grey Powers concern that positive action on the issue has given way to adroit use of linguistic spin.

In expressing these concerns he states;

Grey Power is concerned at the political spin is now being put on the claim by Maori to their claim to sole ownership of New Zealand’s seabed and foreshore. New Zealanders are now being told that the assumption that Crown ownership of the shore and seabed was enshrined in legislation is false

The Prime Minister has told Parliament that the Government could not legislate to affirm the Crown’s exclusive title to the beaches and the seabed. This is because that title does not exist in law.

The Prime Ministers statement has adroitly avoided the issue with words. Mr. Stairmand says Grey Power agrees that you can’t confirm what doesn’t exist in current law. The answer is to just go ahead and make new legislation to grant the Crown ownership of the foreshore and the seabed.

It is all very well to state that a framework is under consideration to cater for Maori peoples interests. Grey Power, however, asks what of the rest of the population? – Do they count for naught? The previous position of legislating to protect the interests of all in free access to foreshore and seabed seems now well and truly on the back burner?

Not only should the majority of the general public be concerned for their right to unrestricted access to foreshore and seabed but also commercial interests should be worried as most of our incoming and outgoing goods travel via the foreshore that are our ports.


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