November 03, 2015
Law Commission voice needed in land reform
Labour MP Meka Whaitiri says Maori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell should bring the Law Commission into his attempted reform of Maori land law.
The Waitangi Tribunal will next week hear claims that the reform process, and many of the proposed changes to Te Ture Whenua Maori Act, are in breach of Treaty of Waitangi Principles.
Ms Whaitiri welcomed the tribunal’s decision to take into account a submission on the proposed bill from Maori Land Court judges.
She says the Crown’s attempt to suppress the highly critical submission, which has been available for several weeks on the Radio Waatea website, was absurd and shows how the minister is out of his depth.
Ms Whaitiri says for the bill to retain any credibility Mr Flavell must embrace a more robust legal approach to investigating the proposed reforms, including considering the views of the Maori Land Court judges and of the Law Commission, which had major input into the original legislation.
The reform process is being managed by an advisory group picked by the minister.
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