December 30, 2016
Ngati Rehua defends Great Barrier settlement
Great Barrier iwi Ngati Rehua – Ngatiwai ki Aotea says the settlement it initialed a week before Christmas is a huge improvement on the agreement in principle.
Some iwi members are objecting to the deal and say it was negotiated by the trust with no input from beneficiaries.
But the board says while the basis of the settlement is the agreement in principle signed in 2011, the redress has been significantly increased and the iwi’s rights as mana whenua of Aotea are strengthened and protected.
Negotiations have conducted intermittently since 2008, and the trust says there have been many hui to keep members informed and get their responses to proposals.
There will be an eight week ratification process, including hui on the island, in Tamaki Makaurau and Whananaki.
They say a yes vote means their rights as mana whenua and tangata whenua are protected from many other iwi who want a say on Aotea.
The proposed settlement acknowledges the cultural, spiritual, historical and traditional association of Ngati Rehua – Ngatiwai ki Aotea to many places on the island.
It sets up a partnership agreement with the department of Conservation and a relationship agreement with the Ministry for the Environment.
Financial redress includes $5.1 million and right of first refusal over crown properties.
The historical account details the multiple ways the crown ignored the tribe’s wishes and bought land, until Ngati Rehua Ngatiwai ki Aotea was virtually landless by 1985.
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