Ngai Tahu v Maori Council

November 14th, 2012 at 12:00 pm by David Farrar

Adam Bennett at NZ Herald reported:

Wealthy South Island iwi has split Maoridom by going in to bat for the Government against the ’s bid to thwart the partial programme, says the outspoken Labour list MP Shane Jones.

Some are furious at Ngai Tahu. They have dared to state their honest opinion.

But two months after Maori King Tuheitia’s national hui to promote a unified iwi approach to the issue, Ngai Tahu has supplied Crown Law with an affidavit in which it says any such rights would not be affected by the partial asset sales programme.

The affidavit from Ngai Tahu runanga’s principal adviser, Sandra Cook, says the iwi considered that it continued to have a full range of rights and interests in water as guaranteed under the Treaty of Waitangi.

“In Ngai Tahu’s view those rights and interests were not affected by the privatisation of Contact Energy in 1999.

“Nor does Ngai Tahu consider that its rights and interests will be affected by the proposed sale of shares in Mixed Ownership Model companies.”

The affidavit further undermines the Maori Council’s case by saying Ngai Tahu believed it was premature to resort to either the Waitangi Tribunal or the courts to deal with the issue.

It was an attempt to make the Maori Council more relevant.

Ngai Tahu is quite correct. The sale of Contact Energy has had no impact on the Crown’s ability to recognise water rights, and neither would the proposed part-sales.

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17 Responses to “Ngai Tahu v Maori Council”

  1. anonymouse (651 comments) says:

    Shock Horror, Some Maori organisations have different views on the Treaty, well I guess that makes them just like everyone else.

    There is a reason the Treaty was signed by Iwi and Hapu, its because Maori were never unified under any one structure,

    To say that the Maori Council ( a body created by what many would call a Pakeha parliament) represents and has a mandate to advocate for the rights and interests of all Maori is totally fallacy,

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  2. barry (1,317 comments) says:

    Thats the inherent fault with the treaty – its all about tribes.

    Its nothing about maori and as long as its clung to it will remain – in its present incarnation – a terribly faulted thing.
    It will remain a cause of conflict and and argument as long as its given any credence at all.

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  3. iMP (2,151 comments) says:

    Ngai Tahu – relevant and modern.

    Maori Council – irrelevant and archaic.

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  4. queenstfarmer (696 comments) says:

    How dare they “split Maoridom”. Everyone knows that all Maori have exactly the same view on everything. Ngai Tahu is clearly racist against themselves.

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  5. Reid (15,531 comments) says:

    Sadly the central issue remains in that their communique expicitly states that in their view, rights exist. There are in fact no rights to be had. The airwaves was about protecting the language, which it’s doing. That means it should not be used as a precedent for this case, but it is.

    But until the Tribunal clearly articulates why one group should have “special” rights over the natural elements which belong not to Maori but to all of humanity, no property right should be taken as read.

    Yet it has been taken as read. Even Key talks about their “rights.”

    It’s a done deal. The taxpayer loses again. And notice our alert 4th Estate Watchdog once again immediately jumped into bed with the “victims” and from the get go talked about “rights” as if of course, they always existed since forever, of course they did. But hey that’s OK, we’ll just pay for it out of the endless funds available to us from the NZ taxpayers. They won’t mind, this is “justice.” Of course it is.

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  6. Monty (946 comments) says:

    this will be huge – and essentially undermines the whole of the Maori Council Court case against the government on asset sales.

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  7. dime (8,752 comments) says:

    how long has the word “Maoridom” been in existence?

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  8. James Stephenson (1,885 comments) says:

    Why would Ngai Tahu want to get involved with the petulant foot-stamping unwashed, when they can negotiate with the Appeaser General behind closed doors?

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  9. Bob R (1,250 comments) says:

    @ National Party,

    Ok, so of the forecast fiscal impact outlined below how much will be spent in recognising the “full range of rights and interests in water as guaranteed under the Treaty of Waitangi”?

    The estimated fiscal impact of the partial share sales is:

    a $6.1 billion reduction in net debt. Proceeds will reduce the Crown’s borrowing requirement. Forgone dividends increase net debt but are offset by estimated finance cost savings

    a $325 million reduction in the operating balance before gains and losses (OBEGAL). Profits attributable to minority shareholders (forgone profits) reduce the surplus. This is offset somewhat by a reduction in finance costs resulting from the reduced net debt, and

    a $475 million increase in net worth attributable to the Crown over the forecast horizon. Gains on disposal are forecast, reflecting an expectation that sale prices will be greater than the proportion of the companies’ carrying value divested by the Government.

    http://www.treasury.govt.nz/budget/2012/fsr/06.htm

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  10. kowtow (6,701 comments) says:

    I’d expect nothing less from Ngai Tahu ,who have done extremely well out of the taxpayer,via a National government final settlement ,that was anything but final!They’ve just received another multi million dollar top up.

    http://www.odt.co.nz/news/national/233198/iwi-get-cash-top

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  11. Reid (15,531 comments) says:

    how much will be spent in recognising the “full range of rights and interests in water as guaranteed under the Treaty of Waitangi”

    Easy.

    Zero.

    Te Tiriti doesn’t grant water rights. If you think it does, show us where it says that, in either the Maori or the English version.

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  12. Griff (6,263 comments) says:

    Te Tiriti does say that they retain usage
    One could ask how that has been denied them. Transport would have been a major use and we replaced that with roads. The kia is still there, Maori still swim in rivers

    Here is the tribunals THE PRINCIPLES OF THE TREATY OF WAITANGI
    http://www.waitangi-tribunal.govt.nz/doclibrary/public/Appendix(99).pdf

    The Principles of the Treaty app.1.7

    In 1994, a case was brought in the Court of Appeal by certain Maori against the transfer of
    property rights in the Rangataiki River and the Wheao River to the Bay of Plenty Electric
    Power Board and the Rotorua Electricity Authority, pending the resolution of a claim to the
    rivers lodged by Maori with the Waitangi Tribunal. While the appeal was unsuccessful, it
    did address the question of the limits to aboriginal title. In an earlier High Court decision
    on the same case, the judge had stated that:
    The Treaty of Waitangi 1840 guaranteed to Maori, subject to British kawanatanga or
    government, their tino rangatiratanga and their taonga. In doing so the Treaty must have
    intended effectively to preserve for Maori their customary title. However liberally Maori
    customary title and treaty rights might be construed, they were never conceived as including
    the right to generate electricity by harnessing water power.
    33
    The High Court had also observed that:
    It is as well to underline that in recent years the Courts in various jurisdictions have
    increasingly recognised the justiciability of the claims of indigenous people either by developing the principle of fiduciary duty linked with aboriginal title . . . or in New Zealand decisions
    in which it has been seen, not only that the Treaty of Waitangi has been acquiring some
    permeating influence in New Zealand law, but also that treaty rights and Maori customary
    rights tend to be partly the same in content.
    34
    In hearing the appeal, Justice Cooke endorsed the High Court’s ruling on the matter and
    also dismissed the appeal, stating that:

    The essence of what has been said above is that neither under the common law doctrine of
    aboriginal title, nor under the Treaty of Waitangi, nor under any New Zealand statute have
    Maori . . . had preserved or assured to them any right to generate electricity by the use of water
    power.
    35

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  13. Nostalgia-NZ (4,686 comments) says:

    “Sandra Cook, says the iwi considered that it continued to have a full range of rights and interests in water as guaranteed under the Treaty of Waitangi.”

    If that statement provides a reason to say some are furious with Ngai Tahu, I’d like to know why. It simply means Ngai Tahu like Tuwharetoa and probably Tuhoe are charting their own course to exercise a ‘full range of rights and and interests in water as guaranteed by TOW.” Where’s the story? Morgan and the King already know that their war cry fell on deaf and smarter ears.

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  14. Doc (85 comments) says:

    @Griff “Te Tiriti does say that they retain usage”

    Where does Ti Tiriti say that they retain usage of water?

    In Article 2.
    Ko te Kuini o Ingarani ka wakarite ka
    wakaae ki nga Rangatira, ki nga Hapu, ki nga
    tangata katoa o Nu Tirani, te tino Rangatiratanga
    o o ratou wenu o ratou kainga, me o ratou taonga

    From the 1914 translation into English from Ti Tiriti:
    Here’s the Queen of England arranges and
    confirms to the chiefs, to all
    the men of New Zealand the entire chieftainship
    of their lands, their villages, and all their property.

    (Except for the land they they subsequently choose to sell, obviously.)

    source: http://archive.org/stream/treatyofwaitangi00buicrich#page/102/mode/2up

    …or was it stated elsewhere?

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  15. Griff (6,263 comments) says:

    If it was my choice the treaty would be shredded
    I was referring to the treaty principles that will haunt us until the whole game is extinguished
    The link which does not work is to the waitangi tribunal The organisation that holds the rights to the so-called living document.
    Read them because that is we are at present not when the treaty was signed in 1840
    Then sigh this http://www.nzcpr.com/petition_EqualRights.php

    sorry my link was invalid
    http://www.waitangi-tribunal.govt.nz/treaty/principles.asp

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  16. Reid (15,531 comments) says:

    Griff the tribunal’s “principles” aren’t Te Tiriti.

    I’m aware the tribunal thinks there are rights. That doesn’t make it so.

    One of things the Nats haven’t done is remove the execrable phrase from legislation “in accordance with the principles of the Treaty..” The MP of course prevents this from happening. Another wonderful gift from MMP.

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  17. Kevin (1,122 comments) says:

    This is more bullshit. All the iwi know the money will flow wehn the publics eye is off the ball. Maori should have no water rights just like they should have no claim over the foreshore and seabed. It’s all just an in house tif between the iwi elite and,their wealthy clintons, many of whom are part to,the national party. More good cop bad cop scamming and we’ll all get shafted even harder.

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