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Te Roroa Agreement in Principle signed

20 December 2004 Media Statement

Te Roroa Agreement in Principle signed

Te Roroa and the Crown agreed in principle today to a redress package settling all of Te Roroa’s historical Treaty of Waitangi claims, Treaty Negotiations Minister Margaret Wilson said today.

The Agreement in Principle, signed at Parliament this afternoon, broadly outlines the proposed settlement between the Crown and Te Roroa. It will form the basis of a more detailed Deed of Settlement.

“This agreement takes us one step closer to a full and final settlement of Te Roroa's historical claims," Margaret Wilson said. "Intensive work by Te Roroa negotiators and the Crown over many years has resulted in this settlement offer. There is still a lot of work to do, but the broad outline of the settlement package has been drawn.”

The settlement will include:
- acknowledgements of, and a Crown apology for, historical breaches of the Treaty of Waitangi and its principles;
- a cultural redress package including the transfer of Crown owned land at Waipoua, reflecting the enormous cultural importance of these areas to Te Roroa; and
- financial redress totalling $9.5 million. Te Roroa will have the opportunity to purchase commercial Crown properties with the financial redress.

Te Roroa are a tribal grouping based on the west coast of the North Island whose rohe (tribal area) approximately extends from Dargaville to the Hokianga. Their historical Treaty grievances relate principally to failure by the Crown to set aside reserves from sale, the landlessness of Te Roroa today due to the cumulative impact of the native land laws, and the alienation of Te Roroa from their wahi tapu, taonga and mahinga kai.

Further negotiations will focus on the detail of the Crown acknowledgements and apology, cultural redress and commercial properties to be included in the Deed of Settlement. The Deed will then be subject to ratification by the people of Te Roroa. If ratified, the Deed will be signed by both parties and implemented through legislation.

The Crown and Te Roroa negotiators look forward to finalising the Deed of Settlement next year.

ENDS

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