March 05, 2013
Mana games sour Treelord deal
An Associate Professor at Te Whare Wānanga ō Awanuiarangi is accusing some central North Island iwi of deliberately misinterpreting custom law to boost their share of the $600 million Treelord settlement.
In research published in Ngā Pae ō Te Maramatanga’s journal AlterNative, Rapata Wiri from Ngāi Tuhoe, Ngāti Ruapani and Te Arawa says talks between iwi to establish who owns the land under the forests have failed.
He says because iwi Māori have not clearly defined what mana whenua means in the settlement act, negotiators for large iwi like Tūhoe are deliberately misinterpreting the concept against smaller iwi.
”Ngāti Manawa in Murupara, who are a significant land owning iwi in the Kaingaroa Forest, are being disenfranchised by false evidence and the misinterpretation of certain tikanga or custom law around mana whenua as well as to gain more land interest in the Kaingaroa Forest and to gain more money out of the settlement,” he says.
Rapata Wiri says the kanohi ki te kanohi process to sort out mana whenua issues was supposed to take a year or so, and instead it has dragged on for five years with no end in sight.
Copyright © 2013, Uma Broadcasting Ltd