Ngapuhi leader Sonny Tau says he made “a mistake, which I deeply regret” when stopped carrying dead kereru, a protected wood pigeon.
How was it a mistake? Did he accidentally kill them?
“I also wish to say this was a mistake, which I deeply regret. The laws around native bird protection are important and to be respected by all, myself included,” he said.
Kereru are protected under the Wildlife Act.
Harming one can result in a fine up to $100,000 or six months in jail.
So why didn’t he? Claiming it was a mistake is like claiming you robbed a bank by mistake. Did the gun go off by accident?
Ngapuhi leader David Rankin said there was nothing wrong with catching kereru.
“Article two of the Treaty of Waitangi guarantees Maori the full, exclusive and undisturbed possession of our fauna and flora. Basically, the problem is that the law hasn’t caught up with the Treaty.”
The problem is they almost are extinct (one of the three sub-species are extinct) due to the attitude above, and if they go extinct then there is nothing to possess.