3 Oct 2012

Ngapuhi leader dismisses strategy to settlement

4:08 pm on 3 October 2012

Ngapuhi runanga leader Sonny Tau says a proposed strategy and pathway to settlement by the Crown will set the iwi back 100 years.

The Government appointed Tukoroirangi Morgan to find a way forward after it rejected Te Roopu o Tuhoronuku receiving a mandate for direct negotiations with the Crown despite a 76% vote in favour by Ngapuhi iwi.

It believes a 24% vote against a mandate being granted is too high for it to proceed with a Treaty settlement, given the inevitability of court challenges.

A report by Mr Morgan suggests starting the process again with the establishment of a new independent mandated authority.

However, Ngapuhi chairman Sonny Tau says Tuhoronuku, which has the authority to act on behalf of Ngapuhi, has held 60 hui and spent $3 million, and Mr Morgan's plan will set progress back a century.

He is now demanding direct talks with the Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Minister Chris Finlayson.

Mr Tau says the proposal by Mr Morgan is an insult to the mana of Ngapuhi.