21 Mar 2014

Chathams iwi trust seeks mandate

7:52 pm on 21 March 2014

A Chatham Islands Maori organisation is bidding to become the mandating authority on behalf of the iwi to settle its Treaty grievances with the Crown.

An aerial view of Te Whanga lagoon on Chatham Island.

An aerial view of Te Whanga lagoon on Chatham Island. Photo: PHOTO NZ

The Ngati Mutunga o Wharekauri Iwi Trust is seeking a mandate from iwi members to enter into discussions and agreements with the Crown.

The Government has signalled that it eventually wants to reach a "whole of island settlement" with the two local iwi - Ngati Mutunga o Wharekauri and Te Iwi Moriori.

But it will be working on achieving two separate settlements that will run concurrently that will take into account any overlapping interests.

Hui have been held over the last two months in Auckland, Taranaki, Wellington and Christchurch with a final meeting on Saturday on the Chathams, to inform iwi members about the mandating process, and to give them the last opportunity to cast their votes.

The Ngati Mutunga o Wharekauri Iwi Trust says it should know within a week if it has been given the mandate by the iwi.