December 2014

Iwi closer to customary rights first
NGATI Pahauwera could be the first iwi to secure customary rights over a marine area if its evidence is accepted by Attorney General and Minister of Treaty Negotiations Chris Finlayson.

Declaring his fascination and love of history, Mr Priestley said his non-binding report and recommendations were likely to be the first of many for the region’s coastline, and every one would be different.

Crown Office Treaty Settlements team manger Harley Spence said he was working with other groups following in Pahauwera’s footsteps and acknowledged the significance of the conversations shared on Friday.

In the lead-up to Friday’s historic handover of evidence, Ngati Pahauwera lawyer Roimata Smail said it was the only group to have had a hearing under the original Foreshore and Seabed Act in 2008.

That was followed by its joint Treaty of Waitangi settlement and foreshore and seabed negotiations.

Minister in charge of Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations at the time, Sir Michael Cullen, suggested they completed the Treaty settlements first and put the foreshore and seabed negotiations on hold while the Government reviewed the act.....

Candidates campaign against Maori wards
A Maori ward seat may be dividing the community, but it is uniting political hopefuls.

Chris Manukonga is the second candidate for New Plymouth's by-election to say he will actively campaign against Maori wards.

Manukonga, who officially put his name forward for the by-election on Monday, has echoed fellow candidate Mary Barnard and said he too is against a Maori ward seat.

"People should get elected on their merits," Manukonga said.

"Maori do want a partnership and I am supportive of that, but I won't support a ward seat that people get by default because no one else can contest it."

Both Manukonga and Barnard are Maori and have said when the New Plymouth District Council voted in favour of a Maori ward seat, it created division in the community.......

Mōtītī locals claim Rena wreck is still affecting kaimoana
The Rena's owners say it was krill but the Mōtītī locals know it was a spill. Ngāi Te Hapu, one of the sub-tribes of Mōtītī Island are up in arms over the latest debacle with the Rena, saying this is even more justification for full removal.

What seems to be paradise in the Bay of Plenty remains under threat.

Rangi Butler says the mana of her people has diminished since the Rena tragedy. She can't even provide seafood for her guests, a traditional practice from many generations ago. She claims the problems aren't easing up.........

Mary Barnard: New Plymouth Maori wards 'divisive'
A political hopeful has come out swinging against Maori wards in New Plymouth.

Mary Barnard, who is standing in next year's by-election for the New Plymouth District Council, says Maori wards are dividing the community.

As a Maori woman herself, she says the ward seat is not needed and is belittling Maori.

"It's offensive," she said.

"Even though our mayor, Andrew Judd, is trying his hardest to be respectful to Maori, in a subtle way he's actually being disrespectful.

"It leaves the impression that we as Maori don't have the skills or abilities to achieve on our own merits, which is not true."

She said there were many Maori, like MP Winston Peters, who had done well because of their talent and their perserverance, not because they were afforded extra opportunities.

New Zealanders had to move away from arguments about the Treaty of Waitangi and focus on working together for a better future for everyone, she said.

The council's decision to have a Maori ward and the furore that followed have created only more division between Maori and Pakeha, she said.......

Background to the NZMC Water Policy Framework
Proposal in brief
The New Zealand Māori Council proposes that national water policy protects three classes of water interests: the natural environment interest, the general public interest and the Māori interest. A commission is proposed to allocate water rights and to provide for each interest from a levy on commercial water usage.....

The basis for the Māori interest
The Māori interest derives from the systematic and extensive use of water bodies prior to the Treaty of Waitangi.

Whether on land or in water, Māori interests derived from access to and the use of natural resources. The access was generally secured through an association with a hapū holding political authority over a district.
The water body was in turn intersected by layers of individual or whānau use rights. The same applied to the inland seas and foreshore. These were all resources which were treated in the same way as land with different persons having specified uses of parts at given times and for varying purposes.

Since the primary source of food for Māori was fish and water fowl, use rights for fishing and other purposes were as intensively distributed within water bodies as they were on land. This applies throughout the Pacific.
The protection due to such rights, on colonisation, is acknowledged in the Treaty of Waitangi, the UN Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and the common law.

Māori ownership existed in the authority to access water bodies, to use them, to enhance their use through weirs and other contraptions, and as a tribe, to control access from outside......

Fishing parks upset settlement
Maori fishing interests are shaping up for a clash with the government over proposed non-commercial fishing parks in the Hauraki Gulf and Marlborough Sounds.

Hauraki Gulf snapper is shaping up to be a big issue for Maori fishing interests in the year ahead.

In a commentary to its annual report, the Maori Fisheries Settlement Trust Te Ohu Kaimoana described the work of the cross-sector Snapper 1 Working Group, which is trying to develop a management plan for North Cape to East Cape including the Gulf.

Chief executive Peter Douglas says Te Ohu’s interests straddle Maori customary fishing rights - both commercial and non-commercial (including communal and individual rights) as well as kaitiaki responsibilities.......

Mighty River signs secret Lake Taupo deal with Maori Trust
Mighty River Power and the Tuwharetoa Maori Trust Board have signed an agreement over water in Lake Taupo, a deal whose terms the electricity generator says are secret.

The agreement is for a period of 52 years and provides an "enduring set of arrangements" in relation to the operation of the lake.

Mighty River chief executive Fraser Whineray said the commercial deal was confidential but did not impose any new restrictions on how his company could use water from the lake for its Waikato River hydro system.

"We're not disclosing the key commercial terms (but) an operating easement will be registered in on the Lake Taupo title."

He said the length of the agreement extended well beyond the current resource consent which expires in 2041.....

Māori veterans in plea for wider honours
A lawyer representing Māori military veterans in their quest for compensation says the Government should acknowledge all Māori who fought in battles, not just those fighting on behalf of the Crown.

Gerald Sharrock has asked the Waitangi Tribunal to look at the issue of Māori who engaged in military activities opposing the Government, such as during the New Zealand Wars, being remembered through memorials.

Mr Sharrock said as part of the reconciliation process it needed to be acknowledged that those wars were civil wars, which grew out of disagreements over who held sovereign authority.

"As such we should not consider anyone to be a rebel, but we consider them all equally, respectfully to be supporting their own views of the constitution at the time," he said......

It's about respect as group becomes Sport Whanganui
At the organisation's annual meeting last Friday, the board of what had been known as Sport Wanganui voted unanimously to add the "H" to its name.

Effective from December 12, the sporting organisation that serves the Wanganui, Rangitikei and Ruapehu regions in all matters sport will be known as Sport Whanganui.....

Leaders back 'H' in district
A second vote has been taken ... and the controversial "H" in Wanganui spelling is another leap closer.

District councillors voted 10 to three yesterday to ask the New Zealand Geographic Board to change the name of the district to Whanganui, in order to meet Tupoho's request to change the council's name to Whanganui District Council.

The motion was lost 7-6 on December 2, after which iwi leader Ken Mair suggested Maori might withdraw from their partnerships with council.

The matter was brought back to an extraordinary meeting yesterday by Councillor Helen Craig....

Decision to transfer ownership of Okaro lake bed to Te Arawa
Exactly 10 years after ownership of 13 of the district’s lake beds was signed over to Te Arawa, the Rotorua Lakes Council has resolved to transfer ownership of the Okaro lake bed to Te Arawa Lakes Trust.

The decision was made at last night’s full council meeting (18 December).

The Crown and Te Arawa settled claims over the Te Arawa/Rotorua Lakes on 18 December 2004 with a deed of settlement transferring ownership of 13 lake beds to the Te Arawa Lakes Trust. Lake Okaro, at Waimangu, was excluded from the deed because it was vested in and administered by the council as a reserve at the time of settlement.

However, the Minister in Charge of Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations wrote to the council at the time, asking that negotiations be entered into with Te Arawa over future ownership of Lake Okaro. Council resolved in 2012 to support the transfer of the lake bed to Te Arawa.

Rotorua Mayor Steve Chadwick said last night’s decision was momentous and the 10th anniversary of the Te Arawa settlement was an appropriate time to bring the unresolved matter to a close.

“This has been unfinished business for Te Arawa and the decision will also strengthen Council’s existing partnership with Te Arawa Lakes Trust in respect of lakes management,” she said.......

Mighty River welcomes land ruling
The High Court has ruled that Mighty River Power, now partly privatised, does not have to consider Maori claims to the 166 hectares of land it wants to sell.

The company set aside two lots that were protected by memorials under the State Owned Enterprises Act for possible return to Maori.

But the court has ruled that Mighty River Power does not have to protect Maori interests or Treaty claims over the remaining lots because they were bought after the act was passed.....

Mayor Carter not good enough for Maori
Labour MP Peeni Henare says the Far North District Council’s proposals for Maori representation aren’t good enough.

The council has all but rejected the idea of dedicated Maori seats, and instead is considering setting up a Maori standing committee.

Mr Henare, who lived in Moerewa before winning the Tamaki Makaurau seat in September’s election, says Mayor John Carter and his council are failing Maori in the north.

"Our people are just so disillusioned with him. The systems are wrong in the council, things like rates on urupa, rates on marae, it's absolutely crazy and I challenged Mr Carter a while ago about that representation and I'm disappointed he hasn't taken it far enough," he says....

All should be entitled to compo: RSA
The Royal New Zealand Returned and Services Association is backing a move by Māori military veterans seeking compensation, but says everyone who served should be entitled.

Lawyers representing Māori military veterans laid out their claims before the Waitangi Tribunal on Wednesday.

Many of the grievances stem from treatment experienced during World War II and the Vietnam War.

RSA national president BJ Clark says when it comes to the Vietnam War, people who served in the New Zealand forces were treated equally and should receive equal compensation..........

"My personal opinion is that all veterans should receive the same compensation. If they need medical support, their whānau need medical support - be they Pākehā or Māori, I think that they are certainly entitled to that and should be given it.

"My difficulty is ... is that I haven't seen that there is a different effect on the Māori or Pākehā."....

Ngai Tahu launches farming diploma
Ngai Tahu has launched a new Maori Farming Diploma which it hopes will produce the country's future leaders in agriculture.

Whenua Kura is a partnership between Te Tapuae o Rehua, Ngai Tahu Farming and Lincoln University.

The diploma course is the first of its kind where students will study in a Maori environment and learn how to apply critical Ngai Tahu values such kaitiakitanga (guardianship), manaakitanga (hospitality) and rangatiratanga (self-determination) to land use......

Mr Hakiwai says the course is open to all people who have a Maori whakapapa and although students will learn in a Ngai Tahu environment, it isn't tribally exclusive......

Iwi wants to buy back ancestral mountain
A Far North iwi plans to buy back its ancestral maunga, Whakakoro.

It was the home of Ngapuhi tupuna Ueoneone and the ancestral mountain of Te Rarawa and hapu Ngati Haua.

Every Ngapuhi descendant can whakapapa (trace back) to the sacred maunga of Whakakoro, near Whangape and north of Hokianga.

In 1992, Ngati Haua members occupied the land in protest of it being privately sold for $700,000 and the disputes have continued.

Whakakoro was unable to be part of Te Rarawa's Treaty claim, as the maunga is privately owned, but with settlement funds it will buy the land back for its people.....

Maori input with FNDC pondered
A Maori standing committee is being considered as an alternative to dedicated seats as the Far North District Council considers how to better engage with Maori.

However, Deputy Mayor Tania McInnes was at pains to point out during last Thursday's council meeting to discuss the issue that the proposal was a starting point for discussion only.

The next step was to discuss ideas for iwi representation with Maori.

Mayor John Carter said he did not want a repeat of last month's situation when the council thought it was doing the right thing by organising a non-binding poll in February to gauge public support for dedicated Maori seats.

Iwi leaders poured cold water on that idea, despite Maori seats being part of a proposal for a Far North unitary authority developed by former Mayor Wayne Brown and iwi leaders such as Rangitane Marsden.

Following news of the poll Mr Marsden said the idea that the council needed to seek the permission of the Far North as a whole before allowing Maori representation was "insulting".....

Ngati Porou maps coastline for claims
Tairāwhiti tribe Ngāti Porou is applying for customary marine title for a "reasonable" stretch of the coastline in its territory, as it seeks to protect its beaches, it says.

Matanuku Mahuika says applications will reflect the tribe's past and present use of the foreshore.

Ngāti Porou has been busy gathering information about its members' traditional use of their coastline.

It is putting that history to the Government, which will decide if the tribe's property rights on the East Coast are recognised under the Marine and Coastal Area Act.

The lawyer acting for the tribe, Matanuku Mahuika, said: "It will be a reasonable part of that coastline for the simple reason that that's a very isolated piece of coastline, and it's always been an isolated piece of coastline".

Mr Mahuika said while it was not bidding for rights to all of their coastline, its applications will reflect the tribe's past and present use of the foreshore...

"The number of applications the Crown has received from iwi, hapu or whanau under the Marine and Coastal Area Act has increased steadily since April 2011. At September 2014 there had been 37.....

The deadline for customary rights' applications - either to the Government or the High Court - close at the beginning of April 2017 .....

Te Arawa partnership proposal to go out for public consultation
A decision by Rotorua Lakes Council to support in principle an iwi partnership model that would include two Te Arawa representatives on its key standing committees, is both an historic commitment to a genuine partnership with iwi, and a pragmatic acknowledgment that the wider community should have a say, says Rotorua mayor Steve Chadwick.

Today's council meeting voted to support, in principle, a Te Arawa proposal that would see the establishment of an iwi board sitting outside of the council structure to replace the council's former Te Arawa Standing Committee.

Councillors voted 10 votes to three to go ahead with the public consultation process.

The new Te Arawa board would appoint two representatives, with voting rights, to sit on the council's Operations and Monitoring Committee and on its Strategy, Policy and Finance Committee, one member on the Chief Executive Performance Committee and a representative on RMA hearings panels.

However, the council decided to make their support subject to a special consultative process next year.....

Council botch-up 'exposes racist law'
An embarrassing council botch-up has exposed a racist New Zealand law, councillor Howie Tamati says.

This week the New Plymouth District Council was forced to officially rescind its decision to hold legally binding citizen initiated referendums, after the idea was proven impossible under law.

But Tamati said it was racist that Maori wards were one of only three issues on which binding citizen initiated referendums were allowed.

The Department of Internal Affairs said they were not possible except for organisational restructuring, electoral systems and Maori wards......

Despite the council voting in favour of a Maori ward seat, next year the district will face a binding referendum on the issue, after former Grey Power New Plymouth president Hugh Johnson succeeded in getting 5 per cent of voters to sign a petition.

Earlier this year Judd wrote to Local Government Minister Paula Bennett asking for the law that allowed a binding poll on Maori wards to be changed because it was unfair.

Bennett later said there were no plans to make changes, but government officials were working on advice about Maori participation in local government and that would be considered next year.....

Treaty settlements no substitute for welfare
Maori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell says treaty settlements aren’t the answer for Maori social ills.

He says while people are concerned infighting within Ngapuhi is slowing the path towards settlement, some of the expectations around what settlements can do is unrealistic.

The experience of Tainui and Ngai Tahu, which settled almost 20 years ago, is funds are used to build up iwi corporations that can survive over the long term.

Some money has been distributed to marae and for education, but the settlements would have made little direct impact on the welfare of ordinary Maori.

Hapu may fight Mighty River
A Northland hapu is considering an appeal after a failed court bid to stop the sale of land owned by Mighty River Power.

The High Court has ruled that Mighty River, which is now partly privatised, does not have to consider Maori claims to 166 hectares of land that it is selling near Marsden Point.

The company had set aside two lots protected by memorials under the State-Owned Enterprises Act for possible return to Maori.

But the court ruled that Mighty River does not have to protect Maori interests or Treaty claims over the remaining lots, because they were bought after the Act was passed......

Iwi seek say in Maraenui redevelopment
Hawkes Bay iwi have signed a memorandum of understanding with Housing New Zealand, the Napier City Council and construction companies over the so called revitalisation of Maraenui.

Housing NZ’s plan to demolish 96 units in the suburb which includes a large Maori population sparked community outrage and have led to discussions about how the overall wellbeing of the community will be affected.

The first stage of the revised project would be led by Roopu a Iwi Trust, Housing NZ and the council, and would focus on informing the local community about the plan and seeking feedback......

2.4 million in Mā Te Reo funding set to be distributed
2.4 million dollars in Mā Te Reo funding is set to be distributed by Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Māori to 85 successful applicants.

Te Taura Whiri I te Reo Māori released the announcement this morning that the annual funding distributed to community, whānau. Hapū, Iwi and other groups about to be dispersed was for the 2014/2015 funding round.....

Unmarked Grovetown graves to be identified
A hidden history of unmarked graves resting in a culturally significant burial ground in Marlborough will soon be revealed.

A number of Ngati Rarua, Rangitane and Ngati Toarangatira rangatira [chiefs] lie at Maori Island urupa in Grovetown.

Three Top of the South iwi have been awarded nearly $10,000 by the Marlborough District Council to identify and record locations of unmarked graves.

Ngati Toarangatira Manawhenua ki te Tau Ihu Trust was given the grant as part of $41,733 in heritage funding handed out.....

Valuation key to Maori land rates
A Far North iwi leader says valuation is the key to deciding what rates councils should be charging for Maori land.

The Far North council is tackling a backlog of unpaid rates, much of it on land with multiple Maori owners who do not live on the whenua.

Haami Piripi, of Te Rarawa, said Northland councils had seized valuable land from Maori over the years, including choice coastal spots, by charging them rates they could not afford, and Ngati Kahu had asked the Waitangi Tribunal to inquire into those losses.

He said Maori land should not be valued and rated in the same way as ordinary freehold land, if it was never going to be put on the market.....

LGNZ supports call for landowners to pay up
Local Government New Zealand is backing a demand by Northland Regional councillor and former MP Dover Samuels that Māori landowners pay their rates.

Local Government New Zealand president Lawrence Yule says he does not buy into the argument that culture is an excuse either, and supports Mr Samuels call for those landowners to pay their rates.

Mr Yule agrees with Dover Samuels that the growing debt means other ratepayers have to subsidise them, to the detriment of local authorities. He believes the amount owed by multiple Māori landowners to the Northland Regional Council has a significant impact.

But Māori academic Margaret Mutu says councils owe Māori - rather than the other way around.

Ms Mutu says the issue has been through the Māori Land Court over the decades and it has been proven that there is no moral or legal reason under the Treaty of Waitangi why Māori should do so......

Maori servicemen grievances to be heard
A Waitangi Tribunal judicial conference to set the boundaries for claims made by Maori military veterans begins today.

The Military Veterans Kaupapa Inquiry will discuss with claimants and the Crown how the hearing should best be conducted.

The tribunal has identified 28 claims which raise grievances about how Maori servicemen have been treated....

About-face on 'H' by councillor
The "H" is back on the table and will be subject to more debate when the Wanganui District Council meets at 2pm this Friday.

Councillor Helen Craig has submitted a notice of motion which has been added to the agenda.

The council is holding an extraordinary meeting that day to adopt its asset-management plan. Now Cr Craig's notice of motion will coat-tail on that agenda.

Mrs Craig's motion asks the council to request the NZ Geographic Board changes the name of the district from Wanganui to Whanganui. She said it would put into effect an earlier request from local iwi to change the name of the council to Whanganui District Council.

On December 2 the council discussed a similar request but the vote was lost 7-6.....

Tribunal report 'confirms iwi ownership of Lake Waikaremoana'
The Māori Party welcomes the long-awaited Waitangi Tribunal report on Lake Waikaremoana released today.

"We are pleased for the claimants that eight years after the hearing began on Lake Waikaremoana they have some closure," says Māori Party Co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell.

"Most importantly, the report confirms freshwater is a taonga and identifies the ownership rights of Tūhoe, Ngāti Ruapani, Ngāti Kahungunu, and Ngāi Tamaterangi to the lake bed."

The 370 page report chronicles the iwi’s relationship with the lake and successive breaches of the Treaty of Waitangi by the Crown. Those breaches include the unilateral lowering of the lake in 1946 without consultation or compensation which has caused irreparable damage to the lake and the Crown’s failure to provide legal recognition of the tribes’ ownership of the lake.

Tuhoe lake stake not double dipping
Tuhoe negotiator Tamati Kruger says the full and final settlement of Tuhoe claims to Te Urewera won't stop the iwi asserting its rights to compensation for use of Lake Waikaremoana.

In its fifth and last report on Te Urewera Claims released yesterday, the Waitangi Tribunal found major treaty breaches in the way the crown took control of the lake away from its owners, who belong to hapu of Ngati Kahungunu, Ngati Ruapani and Tuhoe.

Mr Kruger says the lake was left out of the settlement because it was privately owned.

He says despite the fact Maori refused to sell, the crown behaved as if it owned the lake, building hydroelectric power stations, opening the area up for tourism, and dropping lake levels without consultation or compensation......

New water regime needed before progress
Ngati Kahungunu leader Ngahiwi Tomoana says a system needs to be put in place that recognises Maori interests in water before more irrigation schemes are done.

The giant Ruataniwha scheme to irrigate the central Hawkes Bay has hit a major obstacle with the High Court ordering the rules over pollution levels be rewritten, because they were based on submissions made by the scheme’s promoters after hearings had finished.

Mr Tomoana says Ngati Kahungunu Inc opposed the scheme because it wants the Tukituki River catchment restored to health, but it also supports economic development.

He says iwi leaders are meeting Government ministers monthly to develop a statutory framework for defining Maori rights and interests......

Tuhoe report: Crown made multiple Treaty breaches
The findings, which were released today, deal with Treaty claims in respect of Lake Waikaremoana lodged by Tuhoe, Ngati Ruapani, Ngati Kahungunu, Ngai Tamaterangi and others.

In a four-page letter to Maori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell, tribunal presiding officer Patrick Savage said the tribunal had found seven Treaty breaches arising from the Crown-Maori contest over Lake Waikaremoana, resulting in prejudice to Maori.

Savage said Lake Waikaremoana was a taonga [treasure] of immense importance to Maori who had exercised full authority over it at the time of the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840.

"Today, they are still its owners and its kaitiaki [guardian], but their authority is a pale shadow of what it once was," he said.

Included in the tribunal's findings were the Crown failed to provide for legal recognition of Maori people's relationship with their taonga; the Crown breached the Treaty when it permanently lowered the lake without consulting the kaitiaki or compensating them; and the Crown failed to give effect to the Treaty principles of partnership in its management of the lake during its lease to the Crown for the national park.

"As a result, they [kaitiaki] have been unable to prevent such prejudicial effects as the pumping of untreated or partially treated sewage into their taonga," Savage said.......

Would you pay to go on Ninety Mile beach? User charges on the cards
The idea of free unlimited fun in the sun on one of Northland's most popular beaches could soon be a thing of the past.

Local Maori are considering introducing a number of changes including user pay fees along Ninety Mile Beach.

Far North Iwi, Te Rarawa, will soon have shared governance of the coastline following an estimated $70 million dollar settlement deal with the Crown.

Would you pay to go on Ninety Mile Beach? Have your say on the ONE News Facebook page

Millions of dollars in Maori cash unclaimed
The Maori Trustee says it has accumulated $5 million in unclaimed dividends owed to 59,000 tangata whenua.

The announcement from Te Tumu Paeroa comes after the Atihau-Whanganui Incorporation recently declared it had more than $1.6 million in unclaimed dividends.

Crown's misuse of lake could prove costly
Iwi say a Waitangi Tribunal report paves the way for compensation for decades of Crown misuse of Lake Waikaremoana.

The findings are in the fifth Waitangi Tribunal report on Te Urewera, released this morning.

Iwi say a Waitangi Tribunal report paves the way for compensation for decades of Crown mis-use of Lake Waikaremoana.

Claims were lodged by Tuhoe, Ngati Ruapani, Ngati Kahungunu, Ngai Tamaterangi, and other collectives and people.

The report found the Crown breached the Treaty of Waitangi by refusing to pay for use of the lake to generate hydro-electric power...

There's now an 'H' in our hospital
Whanganui District Health Board members yesterday voted 9-2 to add the "H" into the hospital's name, and the change is expected to be completed by the end of next year. .....

Te Rohe Pōtae inquiries focus on tikanga
There are over 170 claims inquiries into the Te Rohe Pōtae district this week which makes it one of NZ's largest inquires. The Crown says in its closing submissions "the attempts to generalise elements of 'Tikanga' as a 'Taonga' are not useful."

Evidence given by Rangianiwaniwa Pehikino states that 'Tikanga' is the core of the Te Rohe Pōtae's identity and that the Crown should not have attacked it.

The Crown says attempts to make parts of 'Tikanga' as 'Taonga', potentially risks and undermines the importance of what 'Taonga' is considered under the Treaty of Waitangi.

According to the Crown, it's been difficult defining the meaning of tikanga......

A Principled Man
By Willie Jackson
I was very honoured to be asked to speak in New Plymouth earlier this week by the Mayor of the city Andrew Judd. I was part of a debate team that argued for the introduction of Maori seats on councils and was opposed on the other side by a team led by Winston Peters. Mayor Judd has been advocating for the introduction of Maori seats on his council and he has caused uproar in his city because of his stance. Sadly he has been subject to a lot of abuse and criticism.....

Aotearoa profits from Sealord investment
For his part, the firm's CEO Carl Carrington stressed: “Aotearoa Fisheries own divisions were ahead of target which is pleasing under difficult operating conditions like the exchange rate and soft demand for pāua in Asia.”

"This year our business will ramp up efforts in becoming a leader in sustainability which is wholly in line with our tikanga. There is no question that our long term future hinges on how well we perform in this area,” he added.

As part of its strategy to improve earnings, in October Sealord signed several quota pooling agreements with separate iwi collectives to share profits from the catching, processing and shelling of fish, adding up to 4,800 tonne of hoki, orange roughy, southern blue whiting and alfonsino to be caught on its vessels.

Aotearoa Fisheries is owned by all Māori people, through Iwi shareholders and manages commercial seafood assets of over NZD 530 million, including the AFL Inshore fishing businesses Moana Pacific and OPC Fish and Lobster, paua and ready-to-eat meals exporter Prepared Foods, leading oyster producers Kia Ora Seafoods and Pacific Marine Farms and 50 per cent of Sealord Group Limited.

Grey Power turns white power in council backlash
A fight back against Maori voices on councils is gathering pace.

Local Government Minister Paula Bennett says she is satisfied with the current process for allowing individual councils to set the level of Maori representation.

But a bid by the New Plymouth District Council to create a Maori ward is likely to face a referendum triggered by a petition, so it likely to fail....

Māori Party co-leader says Iwi should have final say on exploration in their rohe
Co-leader of the Māori Party, Marama Fox says while some Iwi may disagree and not want to pursue or work with mining companies in their rohe, other Iwi may feel differently.

Marama Fox told Te Kāea, “The Māori Party is of the view that the discussion, the debate, the final decision must go back to the local iwi of that particular region. If you are asking if the Māori Party agrees with the legislation, we don't agree with any legislation that would damage the land or sea just for exploration purposes, but there are areas of the country, some groups and iwi who are open to this type of activity in their own regions as they are the guardians of their own areas.”

This follows the Government’s decision to open up almost 48,000 km² for oil and gas exploration....

Explosion of kina upsets biodiversity
An increase in the number of kina sucking the life out of the seabed is causing growing concern among Northland marine environmentalists.

Conservationist Wade Doak said the destruction of the coastal biodiversity is so severe iwi should consider the implications under the terms of the Treaty of Waitangi.

Also called sea eggs and sea urchins, an over abundance of kina in places causes what marine biologists call barrens - areas stripped of other seabed life.......

Independent chair appointed for PDP hearings panel
An independent chairperson is to head the Hearings Panel which will eventually make decisions on matters raised in submissions to the Proposed District Plan (PDP) for the Kāpiti District, accompanied by another independent commissioner.

Former Kāpiti Borough Councillor Alistair Aburn will be the independent chair and Wellington urban planner David McMahon the independent commissioner. Both are very experienced hearing commissioners.

Council today also decided to take the option of appointing an iwi commissioner to sit alongside two elected members (councillors) on the five-person panel rather than having elected members in all three remaining positions.

Mayor Ross Church said the decision to appoint an iwi commissioner reflects the fact that the PDP covers issues of great significance to iwi - in particular protection of waahi tapu and of natural values. It is therefore desirable that the panel include a commissioner with proven expertise in matters of interest to iwi......

Inquiry told of Treaty breaches
Key to the claims was a series of agreements with the Crown known as the Ohaaki Tapu, or sacred pact. The Ohaaki Tapu was formulated between 1882 and 1885 and claimants argued it constituted Crown recognition of Maori leaders' full autonomy over the King Country.

Under the pact, Maori had the ability to make laws and manage their own land and resources - but the inquiry has heard it was broken by the settler government. A significant part of the pact was a petition signed by Maori in 1883 and given to the Native Minister. But lead Crown counsel Geoff Melvin denied the Crown was party to it.

"The Crown does not regard the petition to be an agreement between it and Rohe Potae Maori to which it was bound," said Melvin.

He said evidence given by claimants during the inquiry gave varying accounts of the meaning of the petition and its significance to the pact. While some claimants said the petition was the pact itself, others argued it was an agreement only between Maori.

"The evidence does not support the conclusion that the Crown agreed the petition would govern future Crown actions with respect of Rohe Potae Maori," he said......

Ngāti Porou and Contact Energy collaborate to pay Marae power bills
Imagine if your Marae didn't have to pay a single cent towards its power bill ever again? Well that's exactly what the future could hold for 50 marae of Ngāti Porou, through a joint initiative, a first of its kind, with the iwi and Contact Energy called Nāti Power.

The marae is the central hub, the hive of activity, a place that can sometimes play host to thousands of manuhiri each year, but it can sometimes come at a cost.

Tina Porou of Contact Energy says, “They’re struggling to cover their basic costs every month, every year, and this is a way that they know that whānau who live away can contribute.”

The average power bill of a Marae in Ngāti Porou is around $2000 per year, so with each person that signs up to Nāti Power, $50 from their powerbill will go towards the power costs of their marae.......

Youth paint Tainui history on Hamilton Police Station
The traditions of Waikato have been painted onto the Hamilton Police Station by the youth of Tainui.

The police hope the mural will help create a safe and comfortable environment within the Waikato-Tainui region.

Youth, police station, graffiti. These are words you would hear that have negative impacts on communities. Te Kāhui Rangatahi want to change that relationship with the police.

Kirimaku Kihi from Te Kāhui Rangatahi says, “It's about voicing our concerns, having a strong relationship with the police will enhance the betterment of the environment.”

The room being decorated is that of the Iwi liaison manager, the next phase is to explore ideas on how to include the Kingitanga movement into the building.....

(Foxes in charge of the chicken coop :-)
Iwi present final submissions in Te Rohe Pōtae inquiry
The Waitangi Tribunal's Te Rohe Pōtae (King Country) district inquiry has taken place this week at the Waitomo Cultural and Arts Centre in Te Kūiti and runs until tomorrow, Friday December 12.

Judge David Ambler is conducting the inquiry and the Tribunal Panel consists of Professor Hirini Moko Mead, Professor Pou Temara, Dr Aroha Harris and Mr John Baird.

Solution 'must be found' to unpaid Northland rates
The chair of the Te Tai Tokerau Maori Advisory Committee is to advocate an ambitious plan to try to resolve a controversial and increasingly costly problem that has plagued successive Northland councils for years.

Dover Samuels says for many years the issue of unpaid rates on Maori land has languished in the ‘too-hard’ basket due to the politics, costs and practicalities of trying to collect from its often multiple owners.

While the law allowed for some unpaid rates and penalties to be written off after six years, in the meantime those ‘debts’ effectively languished on a council’s books incurring GST and other costs.

In the Northland Regional Council’s case it was owed more than $4 million of unpaid rates and penalties from ratepayers in just the Far North District alone as of 30 June this year, of which Councillor Samuels says roughly two-thirds related to Maori land.......

Maori represented in supercity plan
Maori representation has been factored into a proposal recommending that local government in the Wellington region, Wairarapa and Kapiti Coast merge into the equivalent of a supercity council.

The Local Government Commission today proposed that the nine councils in the rohe are brought together.

As part of the two-volume draft, it recommends a governing body of 21 councillors be elected by people in eight newly defined wards covering the southern North Island from Kapiti to Wairarapa.

The proposal also explores Maori participation, including that the new Greater Wellington Council must have a Maori board at least until the 2019 triennial election. It would comprise of the mayor, two councillors and iwi representatives, who would be appointed by iwi organisations....

Threat to democracy: Group
Two district councillors and a Rotorua academic have set up a new organisation - the Rotorua Pro-Democracy Society - to protect the democratic rights of all citizens.

Councillors Rob Kent and Mike McVicker have joined forces with Reynold Macpherson to form an incorporated society as a direct result of what they believe to be unilateral decision-making by Rotorua Mayor Steve Chadwick regarding the Te Arawa partnership plan.....

Maori Party welcomes Waitangi Tribunal report
Maori Party Co-leader, Marama Fox, has welcomed the Waitangi Tribunal's latest report as a positive attempt at applying the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People to a contemporary issue [WAI 2417; Whaia te mana motuhake; in pursuit of Mana Motuhake].

"The Maori Party appreciates the efforts made by the Waitangi Tribunal to be guided by Treaty principles as well as the Declaration articles, in looking at the workings of the Maori Community Development Act and the administration of the Maori Warden's Project. We believe such an approach can only enhance the constitutional conversations we must have as Maori and the Crown"......

MP's new prayer rejected
Parliament's Speaker David Carter today announced that the traditional prayer he uses to open daily sittings of Parliament will remain as is, with its Christian references.

THE PRESENT PRAYER (with religious references highlighted)
Almighty God,
Humbly acknowledging our need for Thy guidance in all things, and laying aside all private and personal interests, we beseech Thee to grant that we may conduct the affairs of this House and of our country to the glory of Thy holy name, the maintenance of true religion and justice, the honour of the Queen, and the public welfare, peace, and tranquillity of New Zealand, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

E te Atua Kaha Rawa
(Translation: Almighty God)
Ka whakamanawa taua hunga katoa kua riro atu i mua i a tatau - moe mai okioki
(We honour those who have gone before us - rest, slumber on)
We recognise the mana whenua, Te Ati Aawa, the kaitiaki of this region, Te Upoko-o-Te-Ika-a-Maui.
We acknowledge the need for guidance and lay aside all private and personal interests so that we may conduct the affairs of this House for the maintenance of justice, the honour of the Queen and the public welfare, peace, and tranquillity of New Zealand.

Te Arawa model on agenda
The Te Arawa Partnership model is back on the council's agenda, with some councillors fearing it could be pushed through next week.

A report on the proposal is set to be discussed at the year's final Rotorua Lakes Council meeting next Thursday from 4pm.

Under the model a new Te Arawa board, independent of council and Te Arawa entities, will take over from the Te Arawa Standing Committee, which has been stood down. Board members could be allowed to sit on council committees, be part of Resource Management Act decisions and establish their own sub-committees. A series of hui have been held with iwi during the past two months with the final one on Sunday.

Councillor Mike McVicker said there would be objections if the issue was pushed through. He said he believed there should be public consultation.

"Anything other than an open democratic route is wrong, when you start tinkering with democracy that's a major no-no," Mr McVicker said......

'We just want one seat' - Willie Jackson
However, Peters, who was the final speaker of the night, challenged this and said Maori could win a seat on a council on their own merits if they tried hard enough.

"If we go down this pathway I know what the future is going to be and it is sad," Peters said.

"If you open up this Pandora's Box you will never close it."

He said focusing on Maori healthcare, education and employment were more important than "giving" a seat to someone.

"How does it feel to be there because someone gave you the seat," he said.

He said if you wanted to be the best in the field, whether that be in rugby or politics, you had stand and win against the best.......

Call for one body to represent all Maori
The recommendation is made in a critical report on the Crown's involvement in the management of the Maori Wardens.

After backing a Maori Council claim, the Waitangi Tribunal said it had been struck by the change in Maori representation.

The council is the only nationwide Maori organisation recognised by law, but the Tribunal says its work intersects with that of other institutions, such as the Maori Women's Welfare League, the Iwi Chairs Forum, and urban authorities.

The tribunal said a conversation was needed between all of the institutions over setting up one national Maori organisation.

Council co-chair Sir Eddie Taihakurei Durie agreed there needed to be a stronger united voice.

Maori Party welcomes Waitangi Tribunal report
Maori Party Co-leader, Marama Fox, has welcomed the Waitangi Tribunal's latest report as a positive attempt at applying the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People to a contemporary issue [WAI 2417; Whaia te mana motuhake; in pursuit of Mana Motuhake].

"The Maori Party appreciates the efforts made by the Waitangi Tribunal to be guided by Treaty principles as well as the Declaration articles, in looking at the workings of the Maori Community Development Act and the administration of the Maori Warden's Project. We believe such an approach can only enhance the constitutional conversations we must have as Maori and the Crown"......

Maori Wardens should be controlled by Maori - Waitangi Tribunal
The Government was wrong in allowing the Ministry of Maori Development to control Maori wardens, a Waitangi Tribunal report out today has found.

The Maori Council had authority over wardens in the past, but was superceded in recent years by the ministry. In a submission to the the tribunal, the council claimed it has authority, under the Maori Community Development Act 1962, over the leadership, funding and training of wardens.

Today's report "largely upheld" that claim, saying that through the act the Crown acknowledged Maori autonomy and self-government should be protected. The report says Maori Wardens are an "integral component of this system of Maori self-government".

The tribunal found that since early 2011 the Maori Wardens Project, inconsistent with the Treaty of Waitangi, has been run without Maori oversight. It also found that funding decisions have been made without any Maori input or oversight.

"We have found that the Crown has allowed systemic failure in the appointment and reappointment of Maori wardens for many years, and has even accepted unlawful nominations rather than carry out its Treaty obligation," the report reads......

Petition papers pinched and torn
Petition sheets opposing Maori wards have been ripped up in front of volunteers while other sheets have been stolen, the petition organiser claims.

Former Grey Power New Plymouth president Hugh Johnson has been collecting signatures since September to force a referendum on New Plymouth's Maori ward.

He has told the Taranaki Daily News one sheet of signatures was ripped up in front of a volunteer.

"And today I was out in Oakura and the business said somebody came in and took two full sheets away," Johnson said.

"That's theft. There were 24 signatures on there."

Johnson said he was unimpressed with the situation.

"If you want a war we will give you a war," he said.

The group needs just 2749 signatures by March 2 next year to force a district-wide "yes or no" binding referendum on the ward.

Johnson has previously said they were planning to have 3500 signatures delivered to council before Christmas, and the extra 751 signatures were to cover potential mistakes and double ups.

Government can't touch Maori act – Waitangi Tribunal
Any reform to an act which recognises Maori self-government should be led by Maori and not the Government otherwise it breaches their rights, the Waitangi Tribunal has found.

The tribunal today released its report into the way the Crown reviewed the Maori Community Development Act 1962 and its administration of the Maori wardens project.

The 1962 act gives statutory recognition and powers to Maori institutions for self-government.

In July 2009 the minister of Maori affairs began a review of the act and the Maori wardens project funded by the Ministry of Maori Development.

In September 2013 the New Zealand Maori Council and several district Maori councils challenged the Government's right to conduct the review.

They said any review of the act should be led by Maori, and anything less than that was a breach of the Treaty Waitangi.

Tribunal urges review of Maori wardens
The Waitangi Tribunal has taken the Crown to task over the lack of Maori oversight of Maori wardens.

The tribunal said that since 2011 there had been no Maori community oversight of Te Puni Kokiri's Maori Wardens Project, which had tried to provide resources and training for wardens.

The tribunal, in a report released today, largely upheld a claim by the New Zealand Maori Council (NZMC), which alleged the Crown through Te Puni Kokiri had acted in a manner inconsistent with the principles of the Treaty of Waitangi in reviewing the Maori Community Development Act 1962 and the role of the wardens.

The 1962 law embodied a compact that gave statutory recognition and powers to institutions set up by the Maori people for their own self-government, the tribunal said.

Maori wardens were an integral operational component of the system of Maori self-government, but the way the wardens were administered was dated and changes were needed. "Secondly, we have found that the Crown has allowed systemic failure in the appointment and reappointment of Maori wardens for many years, and has even accepted unlawful nominations rather than carry out its Treaty obligation, which is to review and repair the system in partnership with the NZMC." ......

ATM with te reo launched
Banks have climbed into tailored packages for Maori and now a local credit union has taken the next step with the first Maori language ATM.

BNZ and Westpac both have Maori cadetship programmes and now, Aotearoa Credit Union, in a joint venture with Te Kohao Health, will install the te reo Maori money dispenser at the opening of a concept branch in Hamilton.

The opening, at Kirikiriroa Marae in Hamilton next Monday, will see debit cards and other items branded with the credit union and health service logos.

Te Kohao Health managing director Tureiti Moxon said it was an exciting time to provide financial services to more than 100 staff and 8000 clients throughout the Waikato region.

"We always wanted to have our own bank and now it is happening," said Moxon......

Catholic leader supports biligual prayer
A Maori leader in the Catholic Church supports the idea of a biligual prayer to be recited in Parliament, but holds some reservations about the idea of not using the current karakia.

Speaker of the House David Carter asked MPs whether they would like to adopt a new prayer, which would see references to "true religion" and "Jesus Christ our Lord" removed.

A decision will be made next week on whether to change the prayer used in Parliament since 1962.

Danny Karatea-Goddard is the vicar to Maori Catholics in the Palmerston North Diocese and believes there is some merit in a biligual karakia, saying it reflects the Government's commitment to biculturalism and the Treaty of Waitangi......

Mallard baulks at MPs' new prayer
Assistant Speaker Trevor Mallard is objecting to the proposed new prayer for Parliament, saying while it removes religious elements from the English version, it deceptively puts them into the Maori version.

It also appeared to confer rights of Parliament's sovereignty on the local iwi, Te Atiawa.

Speaker David Carter appears to have consulted only MPs and perhaps a handful of others about changing the prayer. He won't discuss it before making the decision next week.

The prayer is said daily at the start of Parliament and has long been criticised because it is non-secular and has references to Christianity.

Mr Mallard said he was not criticising Mr Carter, but added: "The whole thing smells of consulting one or two people."

All the religion in the new prayer would be in the Maori part so the vast majority of listeners would not be aware they are listening to a prayer.

"In a way it is almost dishonest.".......

CTU Runanga calls on iwi to ditch ANZ
Maori trade union representatives are calling on iwi to ditch ANZ until they settle their current industrial dispute.

The bank has failed to respect the workers that made it the most profitable bank in the country, according to CTU Vice President Maori Syd Keepa.

"This foreign-owned bank’s profit of $1.7 billion is a 20% increase on last year. New Zealanders will see little benefit from this - profits will be sent offshore to satisfy the bank’s shareholders," said Syd Keepa.

"But the bank still wants more, and at bargaining they’ve been trying to attack workers’ security of hours to bolster these profits."

"Workers have indicated that they are willing to concede some ground on this, but they need to be compensated fairly for that. That is what collective bargaining is all about - give and take."

"Those iwi that have business with ANZ are allowing the bank to get away with its unfair bargaining practices. We are calling upon iwi to signal to the bank their intention to shift their money until they compensate their workers for the sacrifices they are making."

Director wants Maori theatre at Te Papa
A well-known Māori actor and director is calling for a national theatre for tāngata whenua to be created and housed at the national museum, Te Papa Tongarewa.

Jim Moriarty says Te Papa holds the whakapapa of Māori physical and visual treasures and should extend that to theatre....

Waitangi claim on Hato Petera land
In its report on Hato Petera College the Education Review Office said: “A Treaty of Waitangi claim against the Catholic Diocese from old boys of the school, relating to the historical Deed of Trust for the property surrounding the school, is affecting school and Diocese relationships at present.”

The claim centres on the land where the kura (school) is sited, which was granted to the Catholic Church by Governor George Grey in 1849.

A spokesperson for a group asking for an inquiry, Frank Rawiri, said: “We are at a crisis point with the future of the school.”

“If the Wai 1385 claim is not settled the way we would like to settle it, we may as well say good-bye to Hato Petera.”

“We want to get the land back that has been lost or at least some of it. This remains possible because some of the land is still owned by the Crown.”

Rawiri was a member a trustee of Te Whanau 0 Hato Petera Trust from 1995 until he resigned this year.......

Maori health providers review by DHB 'racist'
A planned review of Maori health providers has been called racist and sparked calls for autonomy....

"We are all responsible for Maori health, we don't think we are doing well enough across the board and this has been troubling us," she said.

Hope said that talk over re-establishment of a Maori Partnership Board had taken a long time because the board wanted a model that would "get real traction".

Maraea Ropata, from Waiwhetu Marae, said the Maori Partnership Board had been tried in the past and had not worked.

She said it was time Maori providers went a separate way to look after iwi, and used funding from government in the way they thought best for their people.

To cheers from the gathered crowd, recommendations calling for a stop to the review and the establishment of a Maori Partnership board in the Hutt Valley by December 31 were tabled......

Maori voice an obligation
Maori Party MP Marama Fox says creating Maori seats on councils is a way to restore some rangatiratanga to Maori.

In response to questions from the new MP, Local Government Minister Paula Bennett has said she has no plans to make changes to the current settings where councils decide every six years on whether to have separate Maori representation.

Mrs Fox says that system isn’t working.

She says the Waitangi Tribunal finding in the Te Paparahi o Te Raki report that rangatira who signed the Treaty of Waitangi had no intention of giving up their sovereignty highlights the need for change.

"We need to look at better representation in councils and I know the debate goes 'people should get there on their merits' but actually there is a moral obligation in this country to represent the voice of Maori, given the way in which that voice has been stripped away from Maori over the last 175 years," Mrs Fox says.

Meanwhile, the Local Government Commission has factored Maori representation into its plan for a Greater Wellington that would merge nine councils up to Kapiti and Masterton.

It’s proposing a Maori Board and a Natural Resources Management Committee, which would have a joint membership of council and iwi representatives and advise council on environmental and resource management issues, regional planning, and treaty settlement matters.

Maunga fee could fund restoring Maungawhau
Commercial operators may soon have to pay to take people up Auckland’s maunga could soon face a fee.

The new post-settlement body overseeing the volcanic cones, Tupuna Maunga o Tamaki Makaurau Authority, is starting to make decisions about their future management.

Cars will be banned from the summit of Maungawhau-Mt Eden from next April......

Iwi Chairs' Forum call for Governement to invest in Māori land
In New Zealand, there's around 1.5 million hectares of Māori land, 300,000 hectares of that is under full production, but 1.2 million is currently under performing.

The Iwi Chairs' Forum is calling on ministers to plant a financial seed.

Willie Te Aho says. “We're seeking $3 billion, that's in line with the report by MPI which says a $3 billion investment is necessary to bring the land up to full production.”

It’s clear there's differing views at present around financials.

However, according to a report by MPI last year, if a $3 billion investment was made into those lands, that would see an $8 billion output and almost 4000 jobs.

The Iwi Chairs' Forum wants $1 billion from the Government to kick-start that productivity.

“The Government should certainly be investing money to support Māori development of its lands. What's good for Māori is good for New Zealand,” says Kelvin Davis.....

Judd rejects right-wing criticism
A political think tank has called for New Plymouth Mayor Andrew Judd to stand down.

In an article written for the Right-wing New Zealand Centre for Political Research (NZCPR) former MP and director of NZCPR Dr Muriel Newman criticised Judd’s call for 50-50 Maori representation at local level.

‘‘Mr Judd should do the honourable thing and stand down, then put himself forward in a byelection – this time openly promoting his plan for co-governance,’’ she wrote.

‘‘If he doesn’t step down of his own accord, he should be asked to resign for bringing the office of mayor into disrepute.’’

The New Plymouth District Council voted to establish a Maori ward in September and Judd has since gone further calling for a law change that could ensure up to half of all councillors in New Zealand are Maori.

Newman, a former Act Party deputy leader, said most New Zealanders felt Maori did not need their own ward and Judd was promoting segregation.

‘‘They don’t need special rights or seats based on race, they just need to work hard and stand on their merits, like everyone else.’’

‘‘Andrew Judd needs to explain why he didn’t reveal his agenda when he campaigned for office. The people of New Plymouth should feel seriously aggrieved to find their new mayor is now promoting nationwide segregation.’’

In a poll attached to Newman’s article 99 per cent of people said Judd should resign and of the 30 comments attached not one supported the mayor......

Iwi leaders slam council's poll plan
Two Maori leaders have criticised the Far North District Council over its plan to conduct a non-binding referendum early next year to indicate whether future council elections should include Maori wards.

Ngati Kuri Iwi Trust Board chairman Harry Burkhardt said his authority was "very grumpy" with the council, given that the decision to conduct the poll had been made without consultation with Muriwhenua iwi.

The council had forgotten the high-level partnership between Maori and the Crown, and that as a government agency councils were tied to that relationship.

"Consultation needs to happen before any decision is made regarding Maori seats," Mr Burkhardt said. "Changes will happen with strong leadership; there's a challenge for the council."....

Crown breached Treaty in Rena debate - Tribunal
The Waitangi Tribunal has ruled that two Bay claims concerning the removal of the MV Rena wreck from Otaiti (Astrolabe) Reef were well-founded, in a report released today.

The Tribunal concluded that the Crown signed the deed without having sufficient knowledge of Maori interests in the reef and without having consulted affected Maori, despite it having been both practical and important for the Crown to have done so.

The Crown's conduct, the Tribunal found, breached the Treaty principle of partnership and mutual benefit.....

Andrew Little - Address to post-Election conference
The first of these is our strong performance in the Māori Seats. Ten years after the Foreshore and Seabed seriously shook Labour’s relationship with Māori, the hard work of our Māori caucus and campaigners has returned a result where Labour is now once again the natural political home of Māori......

Iwi stage peaceful protest on Whanganui awa
500 iwi members are staging a peaceful protest on the Whanganui awa, urging council to make river conservation a priority.

Iwi say the objective of the protest is to uplift the mana of their ancestral river by creating public awareness of the health of their waterway.

This project has emerged from the application for consent which will allow the Whanganui District Council to sell the iwi's most precious taonga for the use and mis-use for commercial purpose.....

Marsden's sermon a "publicity stunt" says iwi leader
“What Marsden did was a great publicity stunt, and it fooled all the Pakeha who bought his version of events”, says Mr Rankin. “However, it has been handed down to us from our ancestors that Te Pahi preached to his people several times before he was killed by Pakeha in 1810.”

Mr. Rankin says the issue can be resolved by historians and the Anglican Church correcting their records and apologising for the cultural offence they have been causing to Maori for the last 200 years.....

Iwi pull the plug
Tears and a clear message of relationships damaged greeted a vote by Wanganui District Council that quashed a bid to change the spelling of the Wanganui district.

While the "H" can be used in the spelling of the Wanganui urban area, a motion to have that extended district-wide was lost 7-6.

As soon as the vote was made, local Maori made it clear to councillors that formal relationships between iwi and council would be reviewed.

And it was a decision that had some councillors and mayor Annette Main visibly upset.

Iwi representative Ken Mair told the meeting the decision would have "major implications" on dealings with the council.

Iwi have cancelled a scheduled meeting between council and the Tupoho working party set for today but, more worryingly, Mr Mair said iwi would reconsider all its working relationships with council.

Prime among these are the recently signed deal to operate the port as a joint venture and a similar partnership at the resource recovery centre.

"If you cannot respect our name, then you need to understand our response to this decision," he said......

(Is this a hint of Maori control?)
Plan for vehicle ban on Auckland's volcano summits
The days of driving to the summit of Auckland's volcanic cones are coming to an end, starting with a ban on all vehicles up Mt Eden.

This could be followed by a ban covering the summits of other volcanoes with road access - One Tree Hill, Mt Wellington, Mt Albert, Mt Roskill and Mt Victoria.

A new authority to manage 14 volcanic cones yesterday approved in principle extending a 2011 ban on buses driving to the summit of Mt Eden/Maungawhau to all vehicles.

A detailed report on how and when to implement the vehicle ban will be presented to the Tupuna Maunga o Tamaki Makaurau Authority in April for a final decision.

Maori Representation In New Zealand Local Councils May Go Up
Maori representation in New Zealand's local and district councils has become a big debating point in political circles. The leadership of Maoris has seized the initiative taken by the Plymouth mayor for giving more representation to Maoris in the local councils. Now the community wants the government to take the initiative forward.

Maori Party co-leader Marama Fox raised the issue openly and questioned the minister of local government to come out with the initiatives that seek to increase the indigenous representation on councils, reported Scoop. Nz News. The credit for the Maori upsurge is with New Plymouth District Council Mayor Andrew Judd, who also called upon the government to change the laws to allow for 50-50 representation between Maori and non-Maori sections on local authorities, to reflect the partnership enshrined in Treaty of Waitangi partnership......

Council using Maori calendar as guide
The Auckland Council is planning to plant its trees based on the Maori calendar.

The Society of Maori Astronomy Research and Traditions is collating data and evidence to create accurate maramataka, or calendars, for different areas.

A researcher and adviser to the council, Rereata Makiha, said the aim is to help whanau, hapu and iwi and councils choose the right days to plant, go fishing and hold hui...

Maori seat referendum sought
THE controversial issue of establishing a separate Maori seat on the Tauranga City Council could end up being put to the public vote.

Tauranga’s Tangata Whenua Collective of Maori iwi and hapu has agreed to take the initiative after the council recently voted against establishing a Maori ward for the 2016 election.

The collective has decided to take up the public’s right to demand a poll on the issue by obtaining support from 5 per cent of the city’s electors. If the collective succeeds in getting the signatures of 4237 enrolled city voters then the council will have to run a referendum on the issue, costing $170,000........

Tauranga City Council member Gail McIntosh said the collective had made a bad decision. “I think it is a backward step. That’s my take on it.”

Even if the collective reached the 5 per cent threshold needed for a referendum, the answer would come back overwhelmingly ‘no’, she said. Cr McIntosh said the public did not want a Maori ward.