26 Mar 2012

Jackson believes self-governance for Maori will come

6:35 am on 26 March 2012

The convenor of the Independent Constitutional Working Group says its work will lead to constitutional change and the reinstatement of Maori self-governance.

The pan-tribal roopu, or group, is looking at the basic rules by which New Zealanders should all live by and held a workshop in Wellington at the weekend.

The working group operates separately from the Crown's proposed constitutional review and is investigating how a constitution might be based upon the Treaty of Waitangi (Te Tiriti o Waitangi).

From the middle of April, it will begin a series of hui with iwi in the seven Maori electorates over a year, and the findings will be put in a report and presented to the Iwi Chairs Forum.

The group's convenor says the report will lead to changes - which probably will happen in his grandchild's lifetime.

Moana Jackson says in simple terms, Te Tiriti gave people from other countries permission to come to New Zealand and self-manage themselves.

Mr Jackson predicts change will mean the re-instatement of Maori self-governance - getting back to what the Treaty relationship is meant to be, not what Government thinks it is.

The group is due to begin meeting tangata whenua from Ngati Kahungunu and Te Tairawhiti in April.