Thursday, September 10, 2015

UNDERSTANDING NGATI KAHU - DIFFICULT

Ngati Kahu have long been considered the errant child of the six Iwi in the Far North (Ngati Kuri, Ngai Takoto, Te Patu, Ngati Kahu, Te Aupouri and Te Rawara) collectively known as the Muriwhenua Iwi.  In the 2013 census 8,580 identified themselves as having an affiliation with the tribe with close to 44% living in Auckland and 32% (or 2,733 people) living up here in Northland.    

They are led by Margaret Mutu,  Professor of Maori Studies at the University of Auckland.    Other activists within the tribe include the Popota brothers (John Junior and Wakatana) both of whom have convictions for assaulting Prime Minister John Key,

Ngati Kahu refused to be part of the Muriwhenua settlement agreed to by Parliament earlier in the week.   They are holding out for more, much more, in a package which, if accepted, would be the largest settlement in Treaty history.    The Crown's position is that what they asking for is unrealistic and a threat to the durability of the settlements reached both in Te Hiku (the Far North) and nationally.   Elements of the Ngati Kahu claim are also opposed by Te Aupouri, Te Rarawa, Ngai Takoto, Ngati Tara, Te Patu ki Peria, Sir Graham Latimer and Tina Latimer, Te Uri o Te Aho, Nga hapu o Whangaroa, Ani Taniwha and Owen Kingi.

So, what exactly do they want?   Their grab bag is extensive ....

  • They want 6,386.73 ha of land comprising Rangiputa Station, Kohumaru Station, Part Sweetwater Farm, Kohumaru blocks - Otangaroa Forest, Mangonui blocks - Aupouri Forest, Takahue blocks - Aupouri Forest, various HCNZ properties, certain other Crown lands, roads and (more disturbing) 68.86 ha of privately owned land.   The estimated market value of these lands is a shade over $40 million
  • They want forest compensation payments of between $13.058m and $15.1m and also the accumulated forest rentals estimated at $1.004m. 
  • That Ngati Kahu be recognized as an entity by Act of Parliament, to exercise governance, control and management over all physical and natural resources in the Ngati Kahu rohe and to exercise 'dominion' over he entire remedies area and out to 200 miles off-shore.
  • That the Crown make a payment of $205m in compensation for economic and social deprivation up to 1865.
  • That the Crown create and fund companies to run Rangiputa, Kokumaru and Takakuri stations.   Funding for these companies to be $500,000 per year for a term of not less than three years.
  • That the Crown create and fund management companies for all non-farmland transferred to Ngati Kahu,
  • That all land transferred be held by Ngati Kahu as inalienable land and in accordance with Ngati Kahu tikanga as whanu, hapu or iwi land.  
  • That Housing NZ to institute a preferential policy for Ngati Kahu persons in the allocation of State-owned rental housing.
  • That Ngati Kahu to be recognised as a community housing provider to be freed from the costs and difficulties faced by other housing developers.  This to include the costs of seeking building consents and connecting housing to power, phone, drainage and 'roaring' (sic) as well as the complete remission of rates on Ngati Kahu land.
  • That Ngati Kahu should not have to provide either land or money as reserve contribution(s).
  • That the Crown provide low interest and suspensory loans and conditional grants to Ngati Kahu to assist in the provision of community housing.
As far as the Kaitaia Airport is concerned and it is claimed by both Ngati Kahu and Ngai Takoto.    The position of the Crown is both both claims have a degree of merit and their solution is to offer both parties the right to purchase 50% of the land (with the proviso it remains an airport).    Ngati Kahu want the lot for nix.

My understanding is that Ngati Kahu is not interested in serious negotiation.   For them it's all or nothing.  Looks to me like 'nothing' is very much in play.   The other five Iwi will move on (and hopefully up) while Ngati Kahu remains permanently mired in grievance mode.   

The ball is very much in Ngati Kahu's court but I don't hold my breath. 




1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Concise, factual, informative. No descriptive nouns, no tub thumping. Brilliant.

Follow that one Dodger.

Lord Egbut Nobacon