I blogged on Monday the statement by the Ngai Tahu Chairman:
Maori will refuse to forgo their rights to the foreshore and seabed and see it vested in the public domain unless private owners do the same, says Mark Solomon, Ngai Tahu chairman and member of a Maori iwi leadership group.
I labelled this as unprincipled and unacceptable.
It seems the statements of Ngai Tahi were not the agreed position of the iwi leadership group. I’ve been sent a copy of a press release from Ngati Porou:
The Chairman of Te Runanga o Ngati Porou, Dr Apirana Mahuika, said today that more dialogue between the Crown and iwi was the way to resolve the foreshore and seabed issue.
Dr Mahuika said he was dismayed by reports over the last few days that the Iwi Leadership Group and the Government have reached an impasse over the issue of private title and the proposal to putthe foreshore and seabed into the so called Public Domain.
“Media reports that the concept of Public Domain was being rejected outright by the Iwi Leadership Group are incorrect.
“At the Iwi Leadership Group hui last Friday there was no resolution passed rejecting the idea of public domain and there was no resolution passed mentioning any challenge to private title,” he said.
Dr Mahuika said that discussion on these issues had been counter productive and unhelpful when in fact the resolutions passed by the ILG were much more conciliatory than what had been reported over the last few days.
- Recognition that what is currently on the table is an improvement on the 2004 position.
- Support for aspects of the Government’s proposal – such as the removal of Crown ownership
and ensuring the foreshore and seabed is inalienable.
- Recommendation that there be further discussion and negotiation with the Crown.
I am glad to see that the suggestion that existing holders of title should have it removed from them, is not a formal position from the iwi leadership group.