March 31, 2017
Lawyers challenge land law reform rush
A group of leading lawyers and academics who specialise in Maori land law asked the Government to taihoa its reform of the law.
The final version of Te Ture Whenua Maori Bill 2016 was tabled in parliament today.
In an open letter to the Prime Minister the group, including among others Professor Jacinta Ruru, Dr Robert Joseph, Dr Valmaine Toki, Tavake Barron Afeaki, Annette Sykes, and Angeline Greensill, endorsed criticisms of the bill made by Nelson’s Wakatu Incorporation to the Maori Party earlier this month.
They say there is undue commercial and cultural risk and uncertainty associated with key aspects of the bill, the practical aspects of Maori land management have not been properly thought through, and there is lack of certainty about the costs associated with the transition.
There are also changes to succession that undermine the individual property rights of Maori land owners.
The letter says the reform process has been rushed and has created confusion.
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