Crown apology delivered to Ngāti Maru (Taranaki) | Kua tukuna te whakapāha a te Karauna ki a Ngāti Maru (Taranaki)

Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Minister Andrew Little has delivered the Crown Apology to Ngāti Maru for its historic breaches of the Treaty of Waitangi.

A ceremony was held at Te Upoko o te Whenua Marae at Tarata, hosted by Ngāti Maru, where the Crown also returned land titles to the iwi.

“It is a privilege to deliver the Crown apology to Ngāti Maru kanohi ki te kanohi here at Tarata to honour the commitment the Crown has made to the iwi as part of our renewed partnership,” Andrew Little said.

“The Crown Apology is usually delivered at the Deed of Settlement signing, but the pandemic restrictions at that time meant many Ngāti Maru were not able to attend. I made a commitment to Ngāti Maru that we would have a separate event in their rohe so as many Ngāti Maru as possible could witness this significant moment in our history.”

In recognition of today’s events, Ngāti Maru has named the day ‘Te Pūaotanga mai o Maru i te Atatū – the reawakening and re-emergence of Ngāti Maru’.

As part of the ceremony, the Treaty Negotiations Minister handed Ngāti Maru rangatahi framed copies of land titles returned through their Treaty settlement, to symbolise the return of land to Ngāti Maru as the original owners, and as kaitiaki of their whenua.

The Crown has acknowledged a number of acts and omissions of Te Tiriti/the Treaty of Waitangi in regard to its treatment of Ngāti Maru, including its unjust and indiscriminate raupatu (confiscation) of half their tribal lands, the unjust treatment and exile of Ngāti Maru peoples, its unconscionable actions at Parihaka, and actions which rendered the iwi almost completely landless. 

As a consequence, the connection between Ngāti Maru and their whenua was severed, and generations of their people have suffered economic, social, cultural and spiritual hardship.

“I am pleased that this day has come and I was finally able to fulfil my commitment to deliver this apology to so many people who have waited so long. This final step marks a day of restoration, partnership and it is my sincere hope that this settlement brings a vibrant future for all Ngāti Maru.” 

The Ngāti Maru rohe is centred on the inland Waitara River valley, east to the Whanganui River and its tributaries, and west to Mount Taranaki. The iwi has approximately 2,800 registered members.

The settlement redress is administered by Te Kāhui Maru Trust: Te Iwi o Maruwharanui, a post-settlement governance entity created by iwi members.

The Deed of settlement was signed February 2021, and the Ngāti Maru (Taranaki) Claims Settlement Act 2022 became law March 2022.

Kua tukuna te whakapāha a te Karauna ki a Ngāti Maru (Taranaki)

Kua tukuna e te Minita mō ngā take Tiriti o Waitangi, e Andrew Little te Whakapāha a te Karauna ki a Ngāti Maru mō ōna wāwāhinga ā-hītori i te Tiriti o Waitangi.

I tū ngā ritenga ōkawa ki te marae o Te Upoko o te Whenua, ki Tarata, i whakauhia e Ngāti Maru, i reira ka whakahokia atu hoki ngā taitara whenua ki te iwi.

"He hōnore te tuku i te whakapāha a te Karauna ki a Ngāti Maru, kanohi ki te kanohi, ki konei ki Tarata, me te whakamana i te takohanga o te Karauna ki te iwi hei wāhanga o tō mātou pātuitanga kua whakahoungia nei," ko tā Andrew Little.

"I te nuinga o te wā ka tukuna te Whakapāha a te Karauna i te hainatanga o te Whakaaetanga Whakataunga, engari i runga i ngā herenga o te urutā i taua wā tokomaha ngā uri o Ngāti Maru tē taea te tae atu. I tuku takohanga au ki a Ngāti Maru kia whakatūria ai tētahi huihuinga motuhake ki tō rātou rohe kia taea ai te tokomaha o Ngāti Maru te kite ā-tinana i tēnei wā whakahirahira ki tō tātou nei hītori."

Hei whakamana i ngā mahi o tēnei rā kua tapaina te rā e Ngāti Maru ko 'Te Pūaotanga mai o Maru i te Atatū'.

Hei wāhanga o ngā ritenga ōkawa i hoatu e te Minita mō ngā take Tiriti o Waitangi ki ngā rangatahi nō Ngāti Maru ngā tārua whai taitapa o ngā taitara whenua i whakahokia e tō rātou whakataunga Tiriti, hei tohu i te whakahokinga o te whenua ki a Ngāti Maru hei kaipupuri tūrutu, ā, hei kaitiaki o ō rātou whenua.

Kua whakaūngia e te Karauna ētahi mahi, ētahi hapa hoki e pā ana ki Te Tiriti e hāngai ana ki āna mahi ki a Ngāti Maru, tae atu ki tana raupatu tūkino, matapōkere hoki i te haurua o ō rātou whenua ā-iwi, ki te mahi tūkino me te pana i te hunga nō Ngāti Maru, ki āna mahi tino hē rawa atu ki Parihaka, ki ngā mahi anō hoki ko te otinga atu o aua mahi kua tata kore whenua te iwi.  

Nā konā, i whati te hononga i waenga i a Ngāti Maru me tō rātou whenua, ā, kua pāngia ngā tini reanga o tō rātou iwi e te taumahatanga ā-ohaoha, ā-pāpori, ā-ahurea, ā-wairua anō hoki.

"E koa ana au i te taenga mai o te rangi nei, ā, kua āhei rā anō au ki te whakamana i tōku takohanga ki te tuku i tēnei whakapāha ki ngā tāngata maha kua tino roa e tatari ana. Ko tēnei mahi whakamutunga e tohu ana i te rā o te whakahou, o te pātuitanga, ā, ko taku tino tūmanako ka tōia mai e tēnei whakataunga te anamata taurikura mō te katoa o Ngāti Maru." 

Ko te pokapū o te rohe o Ngāti Maru ko te kōawa o te awa o Waitara ki uta, ka toro whakaterāwhiti ki te awa o Whanganui me ōna hikuawa, ā, ka toro whakatehauaru ki Maunga Taranaki. Tata ki te 2,800 ngā mema o te iwi kua rēhitatia.

Ka whakahaeretia te puretumu whakataunga e Te Kāhui Maru Trust: Te Iwi o Maruwharanui, arā ko tētahi hinonga mana whakahaere whai muri i te whakataunga kua hangaia e ngā mema o te iwi.

I hainatia te Deed of settlement i te marama o Pēpuere i te tau 2021, ā, i whakamanatia hei ture te Ngāti Maru (Taranaki) Claims Settlement Act 2022 i te marama o Māehe i te tau 2022.