5 Apr 2013

Treaty-faithful tribe to resolve grievances

7:11 pm on 5 April 2013

The Crown is to acknowledge it deprived a Tauranga tribe of wahi tapu, access to natural resources, and opportunities for development when it signs a Treaty of Waitangi settlement with Ngati Pukenga.

With the signing, which will take place on Sunday 7 April, the Crown will also confirm that the iwi did not take part in the war in Tauranga from 1864: in fact, the tribe remained committed to Te Tiriti o Waitangi.

Chair of Te Au Maaro o Ngati Pukenga Trust, Rehua Smallman, says their tribal leader at the time avoided conflict and moved north, but returned a generation later to find their whenua had been stolen.

He says the chief had believed the Treaty of Waitangi would protect their land during the war.

Mr Smallman says efforts to retrieve the land only led to his people being fobbed off by the courts.

The deed of settlement includes financial and commercial redress of $5 million.

The present-day Ngati Pukenga iwi comprises the descendants of Te Tawera, Ngati Ha and Ngati Pukenga.