Crown Must Stop Re-Inventing History to sign Settlements
A secret deal where the Government initialled a Deed of Settlement with a Hauraki iwi collective this week is a step too far for Tauranga iwi and hapū, who have found they are to be disadvantaged by the agreement. The Settlement would allow Hauraki iwi rights to Tauranga Moana (Harbour), which effectively trashes and recolonises Tauranga tikanga. In an unusual move, the Government did not publicly announce the Deed had been initialled.
Ngai Te Rangi iwi Kaumatua, Hauata Palmer, says the deal has deliberately been done by stealth and it has enraged and galvanised opposition making the coming year about coordinating resources to fight the Government. Ngai Te Rangi has received immediate contact and support from other Iwi who find themselves in a similar position of having to fight to roll back this deal and ensure their tikanga is protected.
“We are putting Bill English on notice that we will no longer accept Chris Finlayson’s propensity to hand out sweet deals to some and push through arrangements based on invented histories. It must stop. This is no way for the Crown to be engaging with iwi. He has gone too far, and from Auckland, Waikato, through the Bay of Plenty and beyond, iwi and hapu are meeting, organising and preparing to defeat this insulting behaviour.”
Mr Palmer said the current approach to overlapping claims is a fundamental breach of tikanga.
Ngai Te Rangi iwi CEO Paora Stanley said the Crown has made it abundantly clear that it considers the trampling of Ngai Te Rangi tikanga to be acceptable.
“That is an aggressive stance by the Minister and we will meet it with aggression, perseverance, and collective action. The next two years will be remembered as a time when the landscape of Treaty settlements changed. A lot of what Minister Finlayson has put in place will be rolled back.”
Ngai Te Rangi is also supporting Ngati Whatua Orakei and its High Court action against the Crown, where the Auckland-based hapū is arguing tikanga is part of common law and must be considered during Settlement negotiations.
For further comment contact:
Paora Stanley English 027 772 7961
Hauata Palmer Maori / English 027 209 8635
For media assistance contact:
Del Carlini 021 709 907
Ngai Te Rangi
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