A South Waikato iwi has won the right to challenge a decision over land where NZX-listed power business Mercury NZ has a dam and two stations.
The Raukawa Settlement Trust can now progress its position after a successful judicial review in the High Court at Wellington.
Read the full decision here
That overturned the Waitangi Tribunal's decision last October, withdrawing Raukawa's right to appear as an interested party in proceedings.
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At stake is an application by Wairarapa Moana for the return of land in Mangakino, the site of Mercury's hydroelectricity dam and Maraetai 1 and 2 power stations.
Raukawa is claiming mana whenua over the land and won the case Raukawa Settlement Trust v The Waitangi Tribunal and others.
In response to Raukawa's court win this year, Mercury acknowledged today its Maraetai dam and power stations were in the area of land being considered for resumption by the tribunal.
"The claim is for the tribunal to order the Crown to resume or require the return of the land for it to be used to settle the current treaty claim of which the claimant is part," Mercury said.
Although the land included those assets and Mercury was providing evidence at the Crown's request, the power business sought to distance itself from the matter.
"This is a matter between the Crown and the claimant and Mercury is not a party to the proceedings which are long-running. We have been aware of this since its inception. The hearing is scheduled for May and it would not be appropriate for Mercury to offer comment ahead of the hearing," the business said.
Mercury, with a $5.1b market capitalisation, is trading today around $3.77.