May 21, 2015
Waikato Tainui remembers claim struggle
Some of the teams from both sides of the negotiating table will be back in Ngaruawahia today to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Waikato Tainui settling its Treaty of Waitangi Raupatu claim.
Rahui Papa, the chair of the Te Arataura tribal executive, says guests at Turangawaewae Marae will include former prime minister Jim Bolger and his treaty negotiations minister Sir Douglas Graham, as well as Tainui's legal advisor Denese Henare, now a judge, then Tainui Trust Board secretary John Te Maru and advisory Shane Solomon.
The agreement brought to an end 132 years of grievance brought on by the wars of the 1860s and the confiscation of 1.2 million acres of land.
He says it brought profound changes to the iwi, with higher levels of health and education, a billion dollar asset base giving it a sense of self determination, and the ability to have a real say in environmental management through the Waikato River claim settlement.
"Most important is the camaraderie amongst the people and that has really solidifed for the last 20 years and the people focus is the focus is Waikato Tainui going forward" says Rahui Papa
Today's commemoration start with a powhiri at Turangawaewae Marae at 10, followed by the launch of a commemorative raupatu booklet and presentations to the various people involved.
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