Rebecca Quilliam

Rebecca Quilliam is senior reporter at the APNZ News Service office in Wellington.

Crown signs $50m Treaty settlements

Photo / Dean Purcell
Photo / Dean Purcell

The Crown has signed two settlement agreements in Kaitaia this weekend worth more than $50 million for outstanding historical Treaty claims with Northland iwi Te Hiku.

The historical actions of the Crown left the people of Te Rarawa and Ngai Takoto virtually landless, Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Minister Christopher Finlayson said.

Te Rarawa would receive commercial redress of $33.84m, and the return of culturally significant sites such as the Epakauri Conservation Area and Tauroa Point.

"This settlement will allow Te Rarawa to move on with a secure base for economic and social development. It is well overdue, 27 years after the Muriwhenua claims were first lodged," Mr Finlayson said.

"This region suffers from some of the most deprived circumstances in the country. This settlement will be a catalyst for progress and development for Te Rarawa."

Ngai Takoto would receive commercial redress of $21.04m and the return of culturally significant sites such as on Wharemaru/East Beach.

"Finally, the people of Ngai Takoto can look forward to a brighter future," Mr Finlayson said

The settlement would provide Ngai Takoto with a strong foundation for economic and social development and would help to transform the social circumstances of their people, he said.

The collective redress that would be shared with other Te Hiku iwi included a co-governance arrangement with Northland Regional Council and the Far North District Council over Te Oneroa-a-Tohe / Ninety Mile Beach to protect and manage the beach.

Te Hiku iwi would be involved in decisions for the protection and development of public conservation lands remaining in Crown ownership through the Korowai for Enhanced Conservation.

Also included was an accord that set out how the Crown and iwi would work together to transform the social development and wellbeing of Te Hiku whanau, hapu, iwi and wider community.

The deed of settlement will be given effect through legislation.

- APNZ

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