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Maori Tertiary Students Plan Nationwide Protest

Maori Tertiary Students Plan Nationwide Protest

Maori tertiary students throughout the country will be holding protests against the government’s foreshore and seabed legislation at lunchtime tomorrow.

Te Mana Akonga condemns the legislation as it replays illegal 19th century confiscations. Through extinguishing Maori tikanga and common law rights, while protecting the private property rights of non-Maori, it seeks to create a discriminatory and unlawful law that contradicts government’s “one law for all” position. In so doing, it most surely specifies a monotonous future of further grievances. It also renders Crown apologies as farcical in that apologies imply a promise “not to do it again”. Apologies are entirely without meaning or status if the violence is repeated.

Maori students and Maori students’ Associations are planning a number of different actions to both protest against the legislation and to express support for MPs Tariana Turia and Nanaia Mahuta who are to ‘cross the floor’ and vote against the legislation. Te Mana Akonga are heartened by and acknowledge their leadership.

We are deeply disappointed that other Maori seat MPs are not voting to reflect the views of tangata whenua whom they were elected to represent.

Many of the participating Maori student roopu members of Te Mana Akonga and students’ associations have appointed media spokespeople for the nationwide protest.


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