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MAORI

Four Treaty settlement bills pass third readings

Thursday 26 July 2012, 8:29PM
By Christopher Finlayson
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The House today unanimously passed four bills giving effect to historical Treaty of Waitangi settlements for the Maraeroa A and B blocks, Ngāti Mākino, Rongowhakaata and Ngai Tāmanuhiri.

“The government is committed to fixing the injustices of the past through negotiation with claimants,” Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Minister Christopher Finlayson said. “This is the end of a long journey for these claimants. Passing legislation today will enable the people of the Maraeroa A and B blocks, Ngāti Mākino, Rongowhakaata and Ngai Tāmanuhiri to enjoy the benefits of settlement and look forward to a stronger future.”

“The speed at which the government is progressing Treaty settlement legislation is unprecedented, with only a week between the second and third readings of these bills’” he said. “This is possible with the agreement of iwi, and the constructive bipartisan support of all parties in this House to sit extended hours this morning by leave of the Business Committee.”

“The bills were passed unanimously, showing the broad support of the whole House for Treaty settlements between the Crown and Māori to right the wrongs of the past. It further shows the benefits of the Crown and iwi negotiating settlement of past grievances in good faith as Treaty partners.”

“Once the bills are enacted, the people of Maraeroa A and B blocks, Ngāti Mākino, Rongowhakaata and Ngai Tāmanuhiri will join other settled groups in building a platform for economic growth that benefits their members and the wider community.”

“Treaty settlements make a positive contribution to the growth of our country. This government has successfully increased the speed at which Treaty grievances are resolved and we look forward to passing more legislation in the coming year,” Mr Finlayson said.

Māori Party co-leader and Minister for Whānau Ora Tariana Turia moved all four of the government’s bills, as well as the Maraeroa A and B Blocks Incorporation Bill. a Private Bill.

Copies of the deeds of settlement are available on the Office of Treaty Settlements’ website www.ots.govt.nz

Notes

Maraeroa A and B Blocks Claims Settlement Bill, and Maraeroa A and B Blocks Incorporation Bill

The Maraeroa A and B Blocks Claims Settlement Bill will settle the historical Treaty of Waitangi claims that relate to the Maraeroa A and B Blocks. The Maraeroa A and B Blocks are located on the volcanic plateau to the east of Te Kūiti. The beneficiaries of the settlement are the descendents of the original owners of the Maraeroa A and B Blocks including individuals from Ngāti Rereahu, Maniapoto, Raukawa, Ngāti Tūwharetoa and other iwi. This one is not a comprehensive settlement.

The Maraeroa A and B Blocks Incorporation Bill is a private member’s bill, sponsored by Hon Tariana Turia, to establish a Māori Incorporation to form part of the post settlement governance entity. The Māori Incorporation was unable to be established through the Maraeroa A and B Blocks Settlement Bill.

Ngāti Mākino Claims Settlement Bill

The Ngāti Mākino Claims Settlement Bill will settle the historical Treaty of Waitangi claims of Ngāti Mākino. The Ngāti Mākino area of interest lies between Maketu and Ōtamarakau in the Bay of Plenty, extending inland to lakes Rotoiti and Rotomā. The settlement includes an historical account, which describes the Crown’s acquisition of land and its unjust treatment of Ngāti Mākino during and after the Bay of Plenty wars, which began in 1864. The Ngāti Mākino Claims Settlement Bill includes an acknowledgement of Treaty breaches, provides financial redress of $6.75 million, the transfer of over 3,400 hectares of Rotoehu Crown Forest Licensed Land and the return of key cultural sites.

Rongowhakaata Claims Settlement Bill

The Rongowhakaata Claims Settlement Bill will settle the historic Treaty of Waitangi settlement claims of Rongowhakaata. Rongowhakaata is an iwi based in the Gisborne (Tūranga) region with a population of 4,700 including the whanau group

Ngā Uri o Te Kooti Rikirangi, descendants of Te Kooti. The Waitangi Tribunal concluded that Tūranga’s history includes some of the darkest moments in our nation’s history and described Treaty breaches arising from Crown military action against the Tūranga iwi as some of the worst in New Zealand. The settlement includes an agreed historical account and Crown acknowledgments, which form the basis for a Crown apology to Rongowhakaata, the return of culturally significant sites such as one of the oldest surviving meeting houses Te Hau ki Tūranga, financial redress of $22.24 million and a range of commercial redress properties. There is also specific redress for Ngā Uri o Te Kooti Rikirangi.

Ngai Tāmanuhiri Claims Settlement Bill

Ngai Tāmanuhiri Claims Settlement Bill will settle the historic Treaty of Waitangi settlement claims of Ngai Tāmanuhiri. Ngai Tāmanuhiri is an iwi with a population of 1,700 based in the Gisborne (Tūranga) region. The Waitangi Tribunal concluded that Tūranga’s history includes some of the darkest moments in our nation’s history and described Treaty breaches arising from Crown military action against the Tūranga iwi as among the worst anywhere in New Zealand.  The settlement includes an agreed historical account and Crown acknowledgments, which form the basis for a Crown apology to Ngai Tāmanuhiri, the vesting of culturally significant sites including Young Nicks Head Historic Reserve, financial redress of $11.07 million and a range of commercial redress properties.