June 23, 2014
Tauranga iwi prepare for tribunal battle.
Tauranga iwi hope the Waitangi Tribunal can get them some answers about secret deals between the government and the owners and insurers of the Rena.
The tribunal will next week hold an urgent hearing into claims arising from the grounding almost three years ago of the cargo ship on the approach to Tauranga harbour.
Iwi researcher Buddy Mikaere says they’re concerned the owners now want to leave what’s left of the wreck on Astrolabe reef.
They are not reassured by what the Government has revealed so far about the confidential agreements it made with the owners.
"We’re going to ask where are our treaty principles in this? You entered into agreements with no discussions with us. We weren’t consulted. We’re not a party to those agreements. Surely as the owners of the reef we should have been the first cab off the rank for the government to come and talk to us. That didn’t happen," Mr Mikaere says.
The iwi hopes what comes out of the Waitangi Tribunal hearing can help when they go before the Environment Court to oppose the consent the owners and insurers are seeking to leave what’s left of the Rena on the reef.
FOR THE FULL INTERVIEW WITH BUDDY MIKAERE CLICK ON THE LINK
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