Hapū consultation, next step for Ngāpuhi

By Rukuwai Tipene-Allen

The minister of Treaty Settlements, Andrew Little met with Ngāpuhi over the weekend in six information sharing hui across the north to discuss a proposed way forward for the tribe's treaty settlement. 
At the Hokinga hui, Mr Little was challenged by a local kaumātua regarding the representation of hapū at the negotiating table. But, the minister didn't back down. 

Minister Little is confident there's enough reception for the Ngāpuhi claim to work through the detail and reach an agreement soon. 

The response from Mangakāhia was relatively calm and hapū expressed their feelings about the proposed changes. 
Overall people want hapū rangatiratanga, they want hapū to lead the settlement and redress process.
But the minister says he came about some theatrical moments but overall was satisfied with the direction the claim seems to be going. 

Treaty Negotiations Minister, Andrew Little says "In the end, we're dealing with another partner and we have to move at a pace that the hapū are comfortable. I think the benefit of the hui we had over the weekend across the six hui. Some were dramatic and theatrical and others quite critical, others had sentiment of support and wanted to move ahead."

The minister decided to include Mangakāhia as its own taiwhenua. 
It was previously included as Whangārei ki Mangakāhia taking Ngāpuhi taiwhenua count from 5 to 6. 
This is a point that has long been fought for by the people of this region. 
It also means that under the proposed restructure for negotiations they will deal directly with the crown through their chosen negotiator like the other five groupings. 

These meetings were all about gauging the response from hapū about to move forward, the next step will be left to hapū to discuss amongst themselves and present feedback.

Mr Little told Te Kāea, "This is about working very hard with everybody, with all hapū to get the way forward. I am confident after the weekend that there is a good enough reception of the bare bones detail to get to a point that we will get around the table. I would hope sometime soon."

The hui will begin on August 17 at Manurewa Marae.