Iwi remain firm over Rena wreck removal

By Ripeka Timutimu

Ngai Te Rangi have always held the position that the RENA wreck must be removed from Otāiti. But Ngai Te Rangi Chairman, Charlie Tawhiao warns the BOP Regional Council may not rule in their favour.

He says, “It looks as though they will agree to leave it there, that's because some Iwi have also agreed to that.” 

He also says Iwi with interests in the area have been split over the question of money.

It has been four years since the Rena disaster at Otāiti. Since then, Iwi including Ngāti Ranginui and Te Arawa have received money from the Rena owners.

Tawhiao adds, “I can't object to what they've done but for us at the end of the day it's not about money, it's about our Moana.” 

He says it’s back to the drawing board if the Rena is allowed to remain.

“If they agree to leave it there Ngai Te Rangi will have to meet to discuss the way forward.”

A decision from the Bay of Plenty Regional Council is expected on the 26th of February next year.