February 12, 2014
Maori Council asks court to resolve CFRT crisis
The New Zealand Maori Council has asked the High Court for an urgent hearing on the crisis at the Crown Forestry Rental Trust.
In a memorandum to the court, the council says it reached agreement last month with the Federation of Maori Authorities on the way the two bodies appoint three trustees to the Crown Forestry Rental Trust, which funds research on Treaty of Waitangi claims involving former state forest land.
On Saturday the appointment panel unanimously decided to remove Mangatu Incorporation chair Alan Haronga from the trust and replace him with Port Nicholson Block Settlement Trust chair Neville Baker.
The council says FOMA chair Traci Houpapa is refusing to accept that decision, and she has the backing of Crown Forestry chair Angela Foulkes.
It says the crown trustees are not willing to engage on the issue, and the Maori trustees therefore consider the trust is in crisis and cannot conduct any business.
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