Iwi in court over Tāmaki Collective Deed settlement process

By Mānia Clarke-Mamanu

Ngāti Whātua Orakei and Ngāti Paoa iwi representatives say the treaty settlement process for the Tāmaki Collective Deed has caused a dispute between the two iwi. Concerns over the dispute were heard in Auckland's high court this week.

Ngāti Paoa negotiator Hauāuru Rawiri is saddened by Ngāti Whātua o Ōrākei's latest move to challenge the Tāmaki Collective Deed in court this week.

“If we've already agreed to the settlement process and met that, that should be upheld until all tribes with territorial rights to lands in Auckland have completed their claims. So, Ngāti Whātua have settled their claim, what about us who haven't?” said Hauāuru Rawiri

Ngāti Whātua o Ōrākei spokesperson, Joe Pihema said, “The settlement process and law need to work hand in hand, like the home people of the land.  The court should consider these aspects in the law, and not have them separate.”

A property on Grafton Road and another property on Dominion Road in Central Auckland, are being offered to Ngāti Paoa as part of their business redress.

“Original tribal lands should remain sacred and undisturbed to each tribe, but, my land should not be claimed by other tribes, also Ngāti Whātua shouldn't claim land belonging to others, said Joe Pihema.

In 2012, 13 Manawhenua tribes signed the Tāmaki Collective Deed. Ngāti Paoa is concerned that the latest court action will delay the settlements of theirs and other Tāmaki Manawhenua.

Hauāuru said, “Firstly, the claims of other tribes who've not been settled will be delayed and suppressed, that's the greatest concern. It will affect housing development in Auckland at the moment, for tribes with outstanding claims.”

A ruling by the judge is expected in the next few months.