28 Oct 2009

Treaty showdown ahead over frequencies

9:04 am on 28 October 2009

Maori spectrum claimants are preparing for a showdown over the allocation or sale of frequencies freed by a shift to digital television over the next few years.

The Maori Council and Nga Kaiwhakapumau i te Reo Maori is holding a two-day hui at Kokiri Marae in Petone next week with iwi and interested Maori groups.

Nga Kaiwhakapumau treasurer Piripi Walker says the formal consultation over the frequencies has not started yet, but the Crown needs reminding of the Waitangi Tribunal and High Court findings which led to the allocation of spectrum for iwi radio, Maori television and cell phone networks.

He told Waatea News that the Crown believes it can auction and sell these rights, but Maori don't hold that view.