The $6 million spent so far on the Ngapuhi Settlement process has been labelled a "huge waste of taxpayer money on a flawed process" by Te Kotahitanga.

While Tuhoronuku says of the costs they were just following the process the Crown wanted them to follow.

Documents released under the Official Information Act show Ngapuhi received $6,052,823.01 of claimant funding from the Office of Treaty Settlements since the beginning of the Ngapuhi mandate consultation process in 2009.

Yet to date the settlement, which could be worth at least $500 million, has not been achieved.


Tuhoronuku, the group with the Crown-recognised mandate to negotiate Ngapuhi's Treaty claims, received about $5,844,823 of funding including $251,000 for discussions with Te Kotahitanga, the group which opposed the Crown's recognition of the mandate, in 2011.

Te Kotahitanga received about $165,000 for their part in the Ngapuhi Engagement process to address issues raised in a Waitangi Tribunal report which found the structures of Tuhoronuku undermined hapu rangatiratanga.

The remaining $43,000 went to Te Kotahitanga, used under the direction of the Ngapuhi Engagement Group, to fund consultation hui around the country.

Te Kotahitanga co-leader Pita Tipene said people are disappointed $6m has been spent on a
Te Kotahitanga co-leader Pita Tipene said people are disappointed $6m has been spent on a "flawed process". Photo/File

Pita Tipene, Te Kotahitanga co-leader, said people were disappointed in the money spent.

"While it was a huge waste of taxpayer money based on a flawed process and a flawed kaupapa, they remain hopeful.

"I want to keep focused on the vision and use the learnings over the last few years to propel us forward," he said.

Mr Tipene said they would be moving forward with Maranga Mai - a document established by the Ngapuhi Engagement Group which recommends a "way forward" for Ngapuhi.

Hone Sadler, the chairman of Tuhoronuku, said they had followed the prescribed process "that the Crown wanted us to follow".

"To get around to speak to people, and to get around to all those number of hui, costs big bucks," he said.

Mr Sadler said the tribunal process and Maranga Mai had delayed the process.

"I agree with the outcome of the tribunal ruling, but the tribunal ruling did not say rewrite the mandate.

"And that's what Maranga Mai is. However it's not to say that the Maranga Mai report is not useful. It is certainly is useful in a majority of places."

Mr Sadler said Tuhoronuku had concerns about some aspects of Maranga Mai including urban representation and kuia/kaumatua representation.

A spokeswoman for Treaty Negotiation Minister Chris Finlayson said the funding to date reflected that Ngapuhi is the country's largest iwi.

She said the Crown worked with Tuhoronuku and Te Kotahitanga, as well as Ngapuhi more broadly, to try to address flaws mentioned in the Waitangi Tribunal report.

"As a result, [Tuhoronuku] and Te Kotahitanga reached agreement on a range of matters but ultimately could not agree on a way forward for Ngapuhi."

Because of this, Prime Minister Bill English told the two parties in June the Crown would step back from the process while Ngapuhi worked something out.