7 Oct 2013

Ngati Hikairo history before Waitangi Tribunal

7:20 am on 7 October 2013

Waikato tribe, Ngati Hikairo, is due to give evidence before the Waitangi Tribunal on Monday.

The iwi will get an opportunity to have its say as part of the wider Te Rohe Potae hearings in the King Country, as it seeks compensation and an apology from the Crown.

Ngati Hikairo says land grabbing, and what it calls cultural genocide, lead to the tribe losing its whenua, mountain, harbour, waterways, and its independence.

Leaders say before the Treaty was signed their ancestors had invested in ships and mills and were exporting local produce to places such as America and Australia.

They say the main centre in their territory, Kawhia, was a busy commercial port, trading with the first wave of European businessmen.

The iwi says it was forced to fight against colonial soldiers in the Taranaki and Waikato Wars, in order to resist the Government's attempts to purchase and take land.

The hearing will be held at Waipapa Marae.