March 15, 2018
Hauraki ahi kaa claim long dead
Ngai Te Rangi chair Charlie Tawhiao says there must be better ways to settle Hauraki treaty grievances without giving the confederation land in his tribe's rohe.
The Tauranga Moana iwi met yesterday with Treaty Negotiations Minister Andrew Little to discuss its opposition to aspects of the Hauraki Collective settlement, including giving Hauraki a seat on a body overseeing the Tauranga Harbour catchment.
Mr Tawhiao says while the previous minister Chris Finlayson had made huge progress in settling claims, in Hauraki's case the crown had taken a cavalier approach to allocating redress.
He isn't contesting that elements of Hauraki have historical interests in Tauranga Moana, but questions how it may be reflected in contemporary settlements.
"One of our kaumatua said the other day those ahi kaa fires died a long time ago. The argument they were extinguished by the crown may have some merit but we have yet to test that and I think the real issue for us is not whether or not there are interests but whether we understand them fully and we don't because the literature doesn't support – in our view – the steps taken by the crown," Mr Tawhiao says.
He says Mr Little made no commitments, but he seemed to be listening with a fresh ears.
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