Progressing overlapping interests between Hauraki Iwi and Tauranga Moana iwi
- Thank you for your letter of 25 June 2021 seeking views on the various proposals to progress the matters above.
- We share the sadness and disappointment expressed by our Ngāi Te Rangi whanaunga. While time has passed since the Tribunal’s report, this is a situation that has arisen through the fault of the Crown, and not iwi. This is clearly demonstrated in the Waitangi Tribunal’s report and we support the position from our whanaunga, which is that a process followed in accordance with tikanga needs to be allowed time to progress.
Kaumātua hui between Hauraki Iwi and Tauranga Moana Iwi
- There have been benefits from the kaumātua hui in identifying tikanga based methods for dispute resolution and narrowing the issues faced by each Iwi group. We support the continuance of these hui, as there are still matters to be worked through. Not all of ATT-100049-18-757-V2 the Hauraki Iwi Collective members have attended these hui and as a result it is difficult to reach comprehensive outcomes. We acknowledge that there does need to be an end point for these hui, however it will be difficult to achieve this (and it will take more time) if all groups do not invest in these hui and engage in this process.
Options moving forward
- In response to your request for further options, we consider that the best course of action is to partially settle the redress that is not contested and acknowledge that full and final settlement will not be reached until such time as the issues around contested redress are resolved. The parties can then continue to engage in relation to the contested redress in a manner consistent with the Tribunal’s recommendations that is premised in tikanga and that respects the mana of the different parties involved, particularly the mana that the Tauranga iwi (including Ngāti Ranginui) have in Tauranga Moana.
- We note however, that any way forward that involves partial settlement is conditional on approval from the beneficiaries of our Ngā Hapū o Ngāti Ranginui Settlement Trust, which has not yet been sought.
- We strongly dispute any proposal that involves the progression of contested redress as it is exactly that, contested. As such, we oppose the proposal put forward by Hauraki iwi outlined in your letter. While the groups are at different stages in the settlement process, there are no other overlapping groups contesting the redress in the settlement package for Ngāti Ranginui. This is not the same for the Hauraki Collective.
- To date, the decision by Ngāti Ranginui to delay its settlement has been in good faith, to represent the seriousness with which it treats the resolution of these overlapping issues. The reality is that there are significant redress items that have not been transferred to Ngāti Ranginui (despite assertions that have been made about on account payments). This includes commercial properties that are integral to the development of our hapū going forward, which are increasing in value daily.
The Crown as an ‘honest broker’
- We acknowledge the Crown’s acceptance of its role as an ‘honest broker’ in these proceedings and the space that it has given groups to resolve these issues.
- The key issue for Ngāti Ranginui is a lack of evidence to substantiate Hauraki interests in Tauranga Moana. This is something the Crown must have, given it has agreed to grant redress to those groups in our rohe. It would be useful if, in its role as an ‘honest broker’, the Crown could present this evidence to Tauranga Iwi given that it is directly relevant to the discussions on overlapping interests that are ongoing. This is something that has been asked for, but not received, repeatedly by Ngāti Ranginui and would certainly assist with reaching an outcome. ATT-100049-18-757-V2
- In light of the above, we respectfully request a meeting with you to discuss the options going forward. We would appreciate if this could occur before the end of this month and preferably be in Tauranga, however we can accommodate a meeting by zoom if this does not work.
- We are committed to resolving the issues set out above and look forward to your response on this matter.
Nāku noa, nā
Te Pio Kawe
Ngā Hapū o Ngāti Ranginui Settlement Trust