16 Jul 2013

Te Arawa not backing Govt mining exploration

6:12 am on 16 July 2013

Government officials have been told by Te Arawa that it doesn't want any mineral exploration permits granted within its tribal boundaries.

A hui a iwi was held at Te Papaiouru Marae in Rotorua on Saturday with staff from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment to hear about one of its proposals.

The ministry's petroleum and minerals arm is proposing to seek tenders for exploration permits in the Taupo volcanic zone, which includes parts of the Rotorua district.

The ministry's iwi relationships manager, Pieri Munro, says it was a good hui and a chance for staff to explain the proposal.

The hui did reach a resolution. Mr Munro says descendants agreed they did not support the plan to issue exploration permits.

The hui facilitator, Te Taru White, says members are not supporting the proposal because they feel they don't have enough information.

Pieri Munro says the iwi feedback will be considered along with eight other submissions. The date for submissions was due to close at the end of May, but it was extended to 19 July because of a request by Te Arawa.

Meanwhile, manuhiri (visitors) have been at Te Papaioru Marae since Sunday, paying their respects to Ngati Whakaue elder Mitai Rolleston, who has died.

A funeral service will be held at the nearby St Michaels Catholic Church from 11am on Tuesday.