May 31, 2023
Pouākani interest in Mercury hydro dams acknowledged
The Pouākani Claims Trust is celebrating a High Court judgement that Section 27 B memorials be added to the titles on easements held by Mercury Energy for the hydro lakes at Maraetai and Whakamaru on the Waikato River.
Justice Churchman found the memorials acknowledging the customary interests of claimants were part of the transfer of the transfer of electricity generation assets under the State Owned Enterprises Act 1986.
When easements were granted to Mighty River Power, now known as Mercury, in 2010, the memorials were missing.
Pouākani discovered that fact when it went to the Māori Land Court to seek determinations that specified parts of the bed and waters of the Waikato River remain Māori customary land.
Trust chair Tamati Cairns says the win is just one step in a long journey by claimants to have their rights confirmed.