31 Aug 2012

Whanganui River agreement enacted

9:05 am on 31 August 2012

A framework agreement to look after the Whanganui River signed in Parliament on Thursday has been put into action.

The document Tutohu Whakatupua was signed by the Crown and negotiators for Whanganui iwi and sets out ways in which to look after the waterway.

They include:

  • Identifying the river as an integrated living entity that flows from the mountains to the sea
  • Working to appoint a Crown and an iwi representative who act and protect the health and well-being of the river
  • Formulating a river strategy with input from iwi, central Government and recreational users who will identify issues and consider ways to fix those problems

The document forms the basis for a treaty settlement for the iwi in relation to the river.

Treaty Negotiations Minister Christopher Finlayson says the agreement recognises the status of the river as being a living entity with an inseparable connection to the iwi.

Mr Finlayson says Whanganui iwi recognises the value others place on the river and wanted to ensure everyone is involved in helping to make sure the Whanganui River is looked after.