May 24, 2019
Foresight delivers East Coast harvest for Ngāti Porou
A negotiator for Ngāti Porou says it was the foresight of previous generations that allowed the East Coast iwi to successfully pursue its claims to customary title of coastal areas.
Ngā Rohe Moana o Ngā Hapū o Ngāti Porou Bill passed its third reading in parliament yesterday, making the iwi the first to have its rights to foreshore and seabed confirmed.
Matanuku Mahuika says it’s been 16 years in the making as the tribe moved quickly after the Ngāti Apa judgment and the passing of the Foreshore and Seabed Act to assert its rights.
He says hapū and whānau still own most of the coastal land on the East Coast.
"Our leaders of the past had made a decision to retain those lands and if any lands were to go they were to be the inland blocks. The reason for that is they lived on the coast, they relied on the sea and its resources to sustain themselves so they wanted to make sure these places were protected and they were able to maintain their influence over those places," Mr Mahuika says.
In a 2008 agreement there were seven areas where customary title was established, and there will now be work done to determine what other areas qualify.
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