August 27, 2020
Rangitihi keen on ground-breaking settlement
The chair of Te Mana o Ngāti Rangitihi Trust is pleased and relieved at the 92 percent support for the Bay of Plenty tribe’s treaty settlement.
Leith Comer says he’s even more pleased at the turnout of 36 percent of registered eligible voters, up from 25 percent for last year’s vote on the post settlement governance entity.
He’s keen for it to be signed in Matatā this year so Government can get on with passing the enabling legislation.
The settlement includes the return of more than 500 hectares of culturally significant lands, relationship agreements with government agencies, and $11 million in financial redress, and it sets some important precedents.
"We are the first iwi to get the crown to acknowledge and apologise for desecrating and polluting our awa. That will then give us the hook to hold government to account to assist us in restoring the mauri of the Tarawera Awa and Te Awa o te Atua," Mr Comer says.
Ngāti Rangitihi was also able to use the negotiating process to sort out long standing issues over mana whenua with neighbouring iwi Ngāti Awa, Ngāti Tūwharetoa ki Kawerau and Tūhourangi.
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