2 Apr 2012

Iwi at Ruapehu call in police over harrassment

8:34 pm on 2 April 2012

Iwi officials at Ohakune have called in police after their office was targeted by vandals in an apparent retaliation over its protest against a car rally.

Ngati Rangi says the office has been spray-painted and a rotting deer head left on its doorstep, while the Ngati Rangi Trust pou arahi (manager), Che Wilson, says he received death threats.

Mr Wilson says a weekend protest picnic held by the tribe to celebrate the maunga (mountain) was disrupted by several car-loads of people who supported of the rally.

Last week the tribe successfully fought against the Ohakune Giant 1000 car rally, which was cancelled after intervention from the Ruapehu District Council mayor, Sue Morris.

Ngati Rangi was initially critical of criticised the council for initially allowing Ohakune Mountain Road to be turned into a racetrack, and says the maunga is the spiritual altar and burial ground of the tangata whenua.