March 12, 2020
Tensions ease in Kawhia mana battle
A former researcher for Ngāti Hikairo claims believes tensions over claims around Kawhia Harbour may be receding.
Gareth Seymour says today's Poukai at Waipapa Marae is a chance to discuss the whakapapa links that tie the various iwi and hapū together under the mantle of Tainui.
Ngāti Hikairo is also looking forward to Ngāti Maniapoto coming through in a couple of weeks to consult on how their claim settlement offer may conflict or overlap.
He says the Office of Treaty Settlements within Te Arawhiti seems more open to recognising overlapping mana.
"Maybe it's coming out of Taurangamoana and what happened there but in the last 12 months, I think we are seeing from OTS a willingness to acknowledge the mana whenua in Kawhia moana is more complex than just saying Waikato and Maniapoto have all of the mana moana and mana whenua over Kawhia so they are asking Maniapoto and Waikato to come and talk to us. That is a positive move from our point of view," Mr Seymour says.
Three years ago Ngāti Hikairo staged a noisy protest when then Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations minister Chris Finlayson came to Kawhia to meet Ngāti Maniapoto elders and negotiators and visit sites of significance to that iwi.
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