14 Aug 2012

Govt to oppose Ngati Kahu request for land

8:50 pm on 14 August 2012

Attorney-General Chris Finlayson says he'll be keeping close in touch with private landowners caught up in a Far North Treaty claim.

Mr Finlayson was in Kaitaia at the weekend to talk to people with Section 27 B memorials on their titles - tagged for return to Maori - relating to the Ngati Kahu claim.

Most of the properties were bought in recent years from Landcorp .

Ngati Kahu has asked the Waitangi Tribunal to invoke rarely-used powers, and order the Crown to buy back those properties and return them to iwi.

Mr Finlayson says the property-owners are generally perplexed by the iwi's actions.

He says if people weren't advised by their lawyers about the implications of the 27B memorials on their titles, they should contact their lawyers' indemnifies.

But he says asking the tribunal to order the return of properties is not a good way to resolve a treaty claim, and Government lawyers will be opposing Ngati Kahu's request at the tribunal hearing next month.