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Ngapuhi “on the wrong side of history” in treaty settlement


Ngapuhi “on the wrong side of history” in treaty settlement


Ngapuhi elder David Rankin has warned that the tribe faces a generation of crippling poverty if the planned Treaty settlement with the Crown does not go ahead soon.

Responding to Ngati Hine’s decision to withdraw their 40,000 members from the mandate, Rankin says that Ngapuhi’s settlement is now in serious jeopardy.

“I admit that this is a complex issue,” says Mr Rankin, “but the cost of not going ahead is too great for our people. If the elected representatives of the iwi fail to reach a settlement, they will be judged to be on the wrong side of history.”

“I see thousands of our young people going to school every day without meals, hundreds of families living in shacks, and all the problems in drugs and crime brought about by a collapsed Maori economy. What we need is for the elected leaders of the tribes to put down their egos and work for the people”.

Mr Rankin has reminded all the iwi leaders in the region of the whakatauki (proverb) of his ancestor Hone Heke: “If we don’t secure our food in the summer, we will be hungry in the winter.” He warns that if Ngapuhi does not settle this claim soon, grave poverty will become entrenched in the north. “Even if we leave it until next year, it could be too late, especially as the nation’s patience is wearing thin with treaty settlements.”

Ends

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