8 Nov 2012

Te Taou bid for recognition again rejected

6:36 am on 8 November 2012

A third and final bid by Te Taou, a small Auckland iwi, to be recognised in settlement negotiations in Kaipara and Auckland has been rejected by the Waitangi Tribunal.

The tribunal declined an application by Te Taou for an urgent hearing to challenge the Crown's approach to settlement negotiations with their Ngati Whatua relatives.

Paora Kawharu (Lou Paul), on behalf of Te Taou, objected to the negotiations, saying Ngati Whatua does not represent the true Te Taou descendants, and that any settlement with the Crown under Ngati Whatua's umbrella would result in the loss of mana, rangatiratanga, and assets.

The bid was the third application for urgency filed by Mr Kawharu following the decline of a second application by the tribunal two years ago.

In its decision, the tribunal said Te Taou members will still be able to benefit from the Auckland collective settlement, because that settlement specifically recognises the group.

The tribunal also said it lacks jurisdiction to inquire into the matter now that the settlement bills are under Parliament's consideration.