Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Hapū protest over Whanganui river claims process

Hapū protest over Whanganui river claims process


The hapū cluster of Uenuku wants to delay the treaty settlement process for the Whanganui river claim because of fears their interests are not being represented.

An Uenuku delegation is heading to Parliament on Tuesday, the day before Whanganui iwi negotiators initial the Whanganui River Deed of Settlement with the Crown.

The deal is being negotiated by the Whanganui River Māori Trust Board on behalf of Whanganui iwi, but Uenuku hapū, whose rohe are covered by the negotiation, say they have not been given a voice. The cluster of hapū, whose lands have historically extended from the mountains of Ngauruhoe, Tongariro and Ruapehu to the sea, has not seen the Deed of Settlement.

Attempts to initial the deed in February were stalled when Uenuku called for an urgent hearing of the Waitangi Tribunal to delay the signing until hapū were properly consulted.

“Our hapū still haven’t seen the deed. We still don’t know what’s being signed off here,” Uenuku chair Aiden Gilbert said.

“Initialling the deed signifies agreement in principle to the proposed settlement, and Uenuku – which comprises 26 hapū – wants to know what’s in that agreement before it is initialled. We need to know that the voices of our hapū are not being silenced under this agreement, and that they will retain kaitiakitanga of the waterways and lands to which they belong.”

At a hui in Raetihi on Saturday, the iwi resolved to send Tuesday’s delegation to Wellington in an attempt to again delay initialling to give hapū time to consider the proposed deed. On Friday Uenuku will lead a protest in Whanganui from Pakaitore to the Kingsgate Hotel in Victoria Avenue where Treaty Negotiations Minister Chris Finlayson will meet with iwi to continue settlement discussions.

“The river trust board has only ever had the statutory right to negotiate with the Government for claims relating to the Whanganui River. It is a narrow brief and there is no evidence that the boundaries of Whanganui or their people extend to the korowai (cloak) of Uenuku, or supercede the manawhenua of other hapū,” Mr Gilbert said.

Mr Gilbert said that over the years the original claim for the Whanganui River had widened, absorbing all the tributaries ‘from the mountain to the sea’. Potential settlement included Crown-held land reserves which could be vested as part of settlement in the name of Te Awa Tupua, the legal entity that will be created to receive settlement assets.

“When the river trust board was created for the purpose of dealing with the Whanganui River claim, the Crown created a statutory body to represent three hapū of Whanganui – Tama Upoko, Hinengakau and Tupoho. Uenuku is not identified as one of those hapū. Our boundaries, rivers, streams and lakes go through lands that are not in the rohe of Whanganui – so how will we be heard, and how can we protect our kaitiakitanga of our tributaries, waterways and lands?”

Negotiators had not addressed another key concern that the proposed deal may allow Te Awa Tupua to absorb all hapū claims for land 200m either side of the river and its tributaries. Mr Gilbert said these issues must be addressed before negotiators initial the deed.

He said Uenuku was highlighting a national issue.

“The Crown is pressuring Māori to rush through the claims process. It is choosing to deal with select groups and leaving others out. It’s happening all across the motu. We’re one of the largest settlements left, and our issue is that our authority and identity has been usurped by others – and we’re not the only ones. Treaty settlements are being pushed forward because of political pressure but there are fundamental issues that need to be ironed out before settlement can be achieved.”

Mr Gilbert and Uenuku kaumatua Don Robinson have been invited to view the deed on Monday (today) but this left no time to inform Uenuku people about the deed’s contents let alone discuss any concerns before initialling on Wednesday.

“The Crown and Te Awa Tupua negotiators say hapū will have the opportunity to see the deed during the ratification process which follows, but that is shutting the door after the horse has bolted. Agreeing to the deed in principle pre-determines the outcome. We ask for the right for our people to scrutinise the proposal, to speak and to be heard before anything is agreed.”

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Greens: Oil Drilling Face-Off With Labour

The plan is the second component of the Party’s environmental priority this election: Rivers clean enough to swim in again, and beaches safe from oil spills.

The Green Party loves New Zealand and will create a cleaner environment where our beaches remain open for swimming, not closed for oil spills.

The key policy points in the Green Party’s plan to protect our beaches from oil spills are to:
1. Prohibit deep sea oil drilling;
2. Implement compulsory shipping lanes for coastal shipping;
3. Build Maritime New Zealand’s oil spill response capability; and
4. Introduce a stronger legal framework so that when accidents do happen, the New Zealand taxpayer does not have to pay for the clean-up. More>>

 

Parliament Today:

Minister Told Of FBI Investigation, Says INZ: Coleman Must Quit Or Be Sacked Over Dotcom Case - Harré

Immigration New Zealand has done the right thing in distancing itself from Jonathan Coleman’s claims that ministers were not aware of FBI involvement in Kim Dotcom’s residency application, says the Internet Party. More>>

ALSO:

Valedictory Season: Maori Party Founders Say Goodbye

Two major Maori MPs gave there farewell speeches to Parliament Thursday outlining their history, experiences, triumphs and regrets. More>>

ALSO:

Resignation Not Accepted: Transport Minister Breaches Aviation Security Rules

"Running late for a plane at Christchurch Airport, I without thought breached airport and airline security rules by entering the gate lounge through a door usually used for exit only..." More>>

ALSO:

TAIC Report: Urgent Recommendations After Melling Rail Accident

The Transport Accident Investigation Commission has made four urgent recommendations to KiwiRail following the accident two months ago (27 May) when a Matangi passenger train collided with a stop block at Melling Station, Lower Hutt. More>>

ALSO:

Red Tape: Local Regulations Go Under Microscope

The Government says it is accepting nearly all of the recommendations the Productivity Commission has made on ways to improve local regulations. More>>

ALSO:

Spending Questions: Claudette Hauiti To Step Aside At Election

National Party President Peter Goodfellow confirms that he has received notification from List MP Claudette Hauiti that she plans to step aside at the 20 September election. More>>

ALSO:

EPA: Board Of Inquiry Rejects Basin Flyover By Majority Of 3 To 1

The independent Board of Inquiry delegated to decide on the Basin Bridge Proposal has, by a majority decision (3 to 1), cancelled the Transport Agency’s Notice of Requirement and declined its resource consent applications for the construction, operation and maintenance of a flyover on State Highway 1 in Wellington City... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news