June 16, 2015
Iwi ready for Smith sidestep
The chief negotiator for the Tamaki Makauru Collective says housing was always a priority for Auckland iwi.
The 13 iwi met with Housing Minister Nick Smith and Treaty Negotiations Minister Christopher Finlayson on Sunday to discuss the implications of the government’s plans to sell off crown land to address the city’s housing crisis.
Now Ngati Whatua and Waikato Tainui are heading for court because they fear the government is trying to wriggle out of its commitment to give iwi a right of first refusal.
Paul Majurey says other iwi will make their own decisions.
He says unlike other settlements, the agreement covering Tamaki Makaurau includes a specific wording on housing.
"We knew when we negotiated, all 13 tribes negotiated the settlement, that housing was a big take up here, with the large amount of housing infrastructure and crown land around housing. We negotiated a protocol and essentially that was around if the crown was going to be involved in housing projects and it was going to involve land being declared surplus and available for that, we wanted to be the first partner, the first right of having that opportunity before it went to the outside market," he says.
Paul Majurey says the ministers on Sunday committed to honouring that protocol.
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