27 Sep 2012

Govt told water consultation hui not insightful

7:12 pm on 27 September 2012

King Country iwi, Ngati Maniapoto, has told the Government its consultation process on how to address Maori water rights will not produce informed and robust details.

The Government organised six hui to talk with selected iwi and hapu about water and its plan to partially privatise some power companies, including Mighty River Power.

The Government's meetings are to gauge how an interim Waitangi Tribunal suggestion, to offer Maori company shares with benefits, above and beyond, what other shareholders may receive, could work.

One of the hui was held in Te Kuiti on Wednesday.

Maniapoto Maori Trust Board chairperson, Tiwha Bell, who was there, says his tribe went along primarily to listen to what Government had to say.

But he says he told Minister of Finance, Bill English his tribe's views after the presentation.

He told Mr English that Ngati Maniapoto support consultation with iwi, but is against the partial privatisation plan.

Mr Bell told the Minister that the timeframe for consultation is too short and should be extended because talks will not be robust enough.

He says it also means his tribe hasn't had enough time to absorb what the Government's saying, and what the repercussions could be.