8 Aug 2008

Several Treaty of Waitangi settlements

9:00 am on 8 August 2008

It was a big day on Thursday on several Treaty of Waitangi settlement fronts.

Treaty Negotiations Minister Michael Cullen and Ngati Porou negotiator Api Mahuika initialled a deed of settlement covering the East Coast tribe's foreshore and seabed claims.

Dr Cullen also signed terms of negotiation with Auckland iwi Te Kawerau a Maki.

Waatea News reports an unexpected deal was the Government's purchase of a 20-year right over the Matahi and Oponae forests in the Bay of Plenty for $11.8 million.

The owner of the forest, multinational Matariki Forests, has been unable to log the trees because of an occupation by a Tuhoe hapu.

Dr Cullen says the underlying land was the subject of a complex grievance dating back to Crown purchase activities in the 1890s, and the purchase will allow the grievance and surrounding issues to be dealt with.