4 Feb 2013

Maori water rights likely to be main discussion at Waitangi

9:43 pm on 4 February 2013

Te Tai Tokerau MP, Hone Harawira, expects the Maori water rights debate to be a big talking point at Waitangi Marae.

Te Tii Marae in the Bay of Islands is starting to receive about 2000 visitors, including politicians, in the lead up to Waitangi Day on Wednesday.

Mr Harawira is certain the topic of Maori interest in freshwater will be a topic of conversation at Waitangi.

He says water is critical and is the life-blood of the nation and of its people; Maori, Pakeha and everybody else.

Mr Harawira says for that reason the whole issue of the sale of some state assets is important.

He says for Maori, they all have a river, and so it's imperative to their survival.

An appeal to halt the Government's plan to sell shares in state owned power enterprises until Maori interest has been addressed was held in the Supreme Court late last week.

A decision on the case has been reserved.