February 01, 2013
Time right for Waitangi debate
As preparations heat up Waitangi Day next Wednesday, Māori Affairs Minister Pita Sharples says the door is open for a considered debate on where the Treaty of Waitangi sits in New Zealand’s constitutional arrangements.
A review panel set up by Dr Sharples and Deputy Prime Minister Bill English has produced a discussion document and intends to hold a round of public meetings over the next few months.
An independent Māori panel headed by Moana Jackson and Margaret Mutu has also been doing the rounds.
Dr Sharples says the process won’t be rushed.
“Changing the constitution if we change it, is a long “speak” so I’m hoping that people will come out and talk about it, give their ideas. Kei pēhea te waahi tika mō tō tātou Tiriti ō Waitangi. Mē pēhea ka Whakamana ai tō tātou Tiriti ō Waitangi. We’ve opened the door to be debated at government level. I’m hoping everybody will seek an opportunity to talk to these groups”. say Pita Sharples