June 22, 2015
Cultural mitigation in Te Arawa Rena deal
A spokesperson for Te Arawa coastal iwi is defending a decision to strike a deal with the owners of the Rena which could allow the wreck to remain on Otaiti-Astrolabe Reef.
Other iwi in the Bay of Plenty say they have rejected offers by the owners and insurers to drop objections to the resource consent.
But Raewyn Bennett from Ngati Makino says based on its own expert advice and inspections by its own divers, the Te Arawa group has come to the conclusion that further salvage would cause more damage to the marine environment.
It then negotiated the conditions it wanted to see in any resource consent and a cultural mitigation package with the owners.
"We cleaned up our beaches. Our focus has been on honouring our ancestor Ngatoroirangi. We’ve done that, and from here forward, part of the cultural mitigation package is us establishing a research and education centre for our people to honour Ngatoroirangi," Ms Bennett says.
She says throughout the Rena clean-up process the various iwi have been free to take their own path.
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