December 17, 2018
Ngāpuhi vote cause for more head scratching
Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Minister Andrew Little says he’s not giving up on his efforts to bring Ngāpuhi to the negotiating table.
Since the start of this year he has worked with negotiating body Tūhoronuku and its rival Te Kotahitanga to modify the existing mandate to give hapū a greater say in negotiating cultural redress.
This failed to get over the line, with a majority of hapū meetings rejecting it and a bare majority of individual votes in favour, rather than the 75 percent the combined Tūhono group decided was needed.
Mr Little says it’s time for a breather but he’s keen to hear fresh ideas in the new year.
"If people have got constructive suggestions that respect hapū and supports hapū, each to have their kaikōrero to negotiate in a way that enhances hapū but also meets the crown’s needs, its article two need that no individual person in Ngāpuhi misses out, I’m all ears, let’s hear those suggestions," he says.
Mr Little says negotiating hapū by hapū is not practical.
Meanwhile, a leader of the no vote against the Ngāpuhi evolved mandate says the result can be seen as a referendum on the current Ngāpuhi leadership.
Te Kotahitanga co-chair Pita Tipene helped develop the proposal which gave hapū a greater say in negotiations, but then urged supporters to vote no.
"This proposal, the Tūhono proposal, actually had some very good thinking go into it from the technical advisors. It just didn’t go far enough. I think it’s time to get some new fresh leadership and some new thinking with fresh faces and have people in there that have popular support amongst the people of Ngāpuhi on the ground and in the urban areas," he says.
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