24 Sep 2012

Ngati Toa pleased with deal on haka rights

8:47 pm on 24 September 2012

Intellectual property rights lawyer Maui Solomon says Ngati Toa has achieved what claimants wanted from a Waitangi Tribunal case on intellectual property (IP) rights.

Ngati Toa, a lower North Island iwi, has initialled a deed of settlement with the Government.

The deed says the Government will introduce unique legislation, which will require someone using the haka in a commercial to attribute the tribe's chief, Te Rauparaha, as the composer of the haka.

Mr Solomon, a Wai 262 lawyer for three Tai Tokerau clients, says the legislation is a move in the right direction because it's consistent with what his clients want.

He says individual iwi will each need to decide whether or not to follow Ngati Toa's example.

The Wai 262 claim asserted that the Crown failed to adequately protect Maori interests in relation to cultural knowledge and practices, as well as in their relationships with indigenous flora and fauna.

Mr Solomon says even though the Crown hasn't yet responded to the Waitangi report that was released in July last year, claimants who took the claim are still coming to terms with the findings.