11 Aug 2009

Maori Party MPs to meet road protestors

11:44 am on 11 August 2009

Maori Party MPs are to meet protesters who blocked road access to as many as 60 dairy farms near Murupara in the Bay of Plenty on Monday.

Members of the Ngati Haka Patuheuheu hapu have been preventing vehicles from using the Galatea Road between Murupara and Whakatane, because of a Treaty of Waitangi dispute.

Tariana Turia and Te Ururoa Flavell will meet members of the disgruntled hapu at Waiohau Marae at 1pm.

Mr Flavell says the group's issues are being taken seriously and he's hoping for a peaceful outcome.

The demonstrators say they've been excluded from Treaty negotiations.

The vehicles of the protesters were cleared from both ends of the Galatea Road on Monday afternoon.

Fonterra says tankers had to be rerouted, because they could not reach many farm gates.

The hapu expects the road block to resume, but says it could be called off depending on Tuesday's meeting.