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

 

Gordon Campbell: On What John Key Should Be Asking Joe Biden

No doubt, US Vice-President Joe Biden will be updating Prime Minister John Key on the chances of a TPP vote taking place in the ‘ lame duck’ session of Congress that’s held between the November’s election and the inauguration of a new President in January. More>>

ALSO:

Make NZ Make Again: Greens Will Establish A Minister For Manufacturing

The Green Party announced today that it will establish a Minister for Manufacturing in Cabinet, to better represent the interests of manufacturers and ensure they thrive. The Minister will be inside Cabinet and have responsibility for the long-term interests of the manufacturing sector. More>>

ALSO:

Cannabis Party: Treasury Figures On Cost Of Criminalisation

Figures released by Treasury prove the economic viability of The Cannabis Party's policy, while destroying the credibility of police claims about cannabis harms. More>>

ALSO:

Green Party: Investigation Into Mental Health Facilities Shows Disarray

The Health Minister must urgently launch an inquiry into mental health services, after serious issues with the standard of care at mental health and disability facilities around the country were revealed today, the Green Party said. More>>

ALSO:

Apparently He Means 'Years 0-8': Seymour Announces 4th Partnership Schools Application Round

“The continuing growth of this policy reflects the achievement of the eight existing Partnership Schools, and the strong levels of interest educators and community leaders are showing in the Partnership Schools model and what it offers students and their families,” Mr Seymour says. More>>

ALSO:

Trust Directors: Urban Māori Win Case Against Te Ohu Kai Moana

The National Urban Māori Authority (NUMA) and Te Waipareira Trust have succeeded in their claim over a $20 million trust set up for the benefit of urban Māori, meaning all directors of the trust must represent Māori who are not affiliated with an iwi. More>>

New Model: Carbon Tax Could Lower Emissions And Boost Economy

A carbon tax targeting emissions-intensive industries, along with a revamped Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), could boost economic growth, with the extra tax generated used to cut GST from 15 percent to 12.5 percent. More>>

ALSO:

Budget Docs Release: ACC Sought $158mn In Budget 2016, Got $26.4mn

The Accident Compensation Commission requested an extra $158 million in funding for 2016/17 from the government ahead of Budget 2016, but Treasury instead recommended an interim payment of just $26.4 million be funded to tackle demographic changes, papers published by the government show. More>>

ALSO:

Submissions Sought: Māori Party Joins Opposition Housing Inquiry

People who are homeless, those who were once homeless, those working with the homeless and concerned New Zealanders are being asked to share their experiences and solutions to this growing issue with the Cross-Party Homelessness Inquiry. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news