27 Apr 2012

Taranaki Maori look to trust for new tribal body

6:32 am on 27 April 2012

Taranaki Maori looking at setting up a new tribal body are considering using the existing Taranaki Maori Trust Board as a model to serve beneficiaries more effectively.

The eight iwi in the rohe (area) have been talking about the role and function of the existing board, how it holds and administers iwi assets, and how it spends money.

An advisor to Taranaki iwi authorities, Jamie Tuuta, says one of the major issues the board is facing is, it has never been technically and legally a representative body of Taranaki iwi, but has only assumed that role in the absence of an entity of similar status.

He says it could be possible, after further discussions, to reshape the existing board into a new tribal organisation - which would create many advantages.

Mr Tuuta says the Taranaki Maori Trust Board is a statutory body, it deals with perpetual land successions, and it is well known.

Mr Tuuta admits it won't be an easy job as there are eight iwi in the region from three different waka, and multiple hapu, who all have their individual views about the future role of the board.