May 09, 2013
Marae process ends pounamu fight
Ngāi Tahu has abandoned an attempt to prosecute an artist for alleged theft of pounamu.
The iwi says it has instead undertaken a tikanga marae resolution process to deal with the matter.
In the district court at Greymouth this afternoon, police will formally withdraw charges against Makaawhio and Ngāi Tahu member Bevan Climo.
Mr Climo, who wrote Ngāi Tahu's pounamu management plan, came into conflict with some in the iwi over his support for Haast helicopter pilots David and Morgan Saxton, who were convicted in 2007 of stealing snowflake pounamu after the court rejected their argument they had customary rights.
Makaawhio Chair Paul Madgwick says the marae process, which was overseen by Sir Tipene O'Regan and Sir Mark Solomon, acknowledged Mr Climo's whakapapa rights as well as the rights of the tribal collective.
The Ngāi Tahu (Pounamu Vesting) Act 1997 gave Te Rūnanga ō Ngāi Tahu rights of ownership and management of all pounamu in its rohe excluding the Arahura River Catchment.
Copyright © 2013, Uma Broadcasting Ltd