December 11, 2012
Judge unable to understand Māori arguments
The New Zealand Māori Council and Waikato River tribes intend to lodge an appeal before Christmas to a High Court decision ruling out their challenge to state asset sales.
Justice Ronald Young rejected the claimants’ case that the privatisation of part of Mighty River Power’s shareholding will affect the Crown’s ability to recognise rights and provide redress for Māori claims to proprietary interest in water.
Council spokesperson Rahui Katene says the outcome was expected from the way the judge acted during the hearing.
"It was made very clear during the case that he wasn’t able to understand our arguments, and it was always going to be hard for a judge sitting alone to understand. We appeal. We sit in front of a whole panel that have expertise in different areas. I think we will stand a much better chance in that forum”. She says.
Mrs Katene says the claimants would prefer to sit with government and negotiate a solution, rather than continue litigating.