September 12, 2016
Crown perpetuates violence against Maori over Waitara land
Treaty settlements for places like Waitara are being compared to family violence rather than an honourable treaty-based process.
The Taranaki Maori Women’s Network is holding a hikoi in the Taranaki township next week to call for the Pekapeka Block to its rightful owners.
A contested sale of the block triggered the First Taranaki War in 1860, but it was not included in the Te Atiawa Settlement because the purchase price would have taken too much of the settlement quantum.
Instead the post settlement governance body struck a deal with the New Plymouth District Council which will give the iwi some council reserves while allowing existing lessees to freehold their sections.
Waikato University academic Dr Leonie Pihama, who is from Te Atiawa, says the crown is perpetuating violence against Maori in the way it negotiates.
"One of the things i have talked to other around the treaty settlement process, particularly in respect to Waitara, because I have a strong connection to that whenua, is that the crown is acting like a violent partner in a domestic violence relationship, that they are very abusive to our people, they are very abusive in their process and they deny us some fundamental rights to live as Maori on our own land," Dr Pihama says.
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