22 Dec 2012

Waitangi Tribunal releases Tuhoe report

4:14 pm on 22 December 2012

The Waitangi Tribunal has released the fourth instalment of a report on how the Crown treated the people of Ngai Tuhoe in the past.

Previous editions have covered how the Crown acted mercilessly during an 1869 military operation in the Urewera district, broke promises and took much of the land with aggressive buying.

The report investigates how Maori communities have fared in the 20th century with only fragments of their original land.

It examines the police action to arrest Tuhoe leader and prophet Rua Kenana in Maungapohatu in April 1916.

The Tribunal describes the action as an invasion and says the Crown was guilty of destroying a vibrant community.

The Crown has conceded that its force was excessive, and breached the Treaty of Waitangi because it acted in an unreasonable manner.

The Waitangi Tribunal also investigated land development initiatives by the Crown, such as timber milling, which were intended to deliver benefits but ultimately left Ngai Tuhoe with heavy debts.