Information For Muriwhenua Claimants

  • Doug Graham
Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations

The Minister in Charge of Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations has directed that the letter set out below be published in English and Maori in newspapers serving the Muriwhenua claim area. The letter sets out a proposal from the Minister for a process to appoint mandated negotiators to start negotiations with the Crown on the Muriwhenua Treaty claim.

The letter was sent on 3 May 1999 to the following persons and organisations, with copies to their respective legal counsel:
- Rima Edwards, Te Runanga o Muriwhenua
- Graham Neho, Ngati Kuri Trust Board
- Rangitane Marsden, Ngaitakoto-a-Iwi Research Unit
- Walter Kapa, Te Runanga o Te Aupouri
- George Witana, Aupouri Maori Trust Board
- Anne Herbert, Te Runanga o Te Rarawa
- Margaret Mutu, Te Runanga-a-Iwi o Ngati Kahu

The Minister's purpose in publishing this letter is to inform Muriwhenua claimants directly of the Crown's approach to the mandating issues affecting the progress of negotiations.

The letter reads:

It is now almost three months since I met with representatives of the Treaty Claims Alliance and Te Runanga o Muriwhenua to discuss the proposal I raised in late 1998 to establish a joint Negotiations Management Committee to initiate negotiations between the Crown and properly mandated claimant representatives. While both parties expressed support in principle for the proposal, I regret that I have received no indication that you have actually reached agreement to work with each other to carry out the proposal.

I have no doubt that each of you is sincere in the concerns you have expressed to me over a long period on the best way to negotiate the claim. For a number of reasons, the unity, may have existed in the past, has eroded. Some of you blame the Crown's unwillingness to choose either the Alliance iwi groups or the Runanga for this, but it is my considered view that each of your groups must play a role in the negotiation of the claim in order for any eventual settlement to be lasting. Others of you seek assurances that the Runanga or the Alliance iwi groups' interests will not be submerged in an eagerness to secure a settlement with the Crown.

I understand this desire, but note that checks and balances can be built into the negotiation process to ensure that a lasting settlement is not threatened by short-term expediency. In particular any settlement will need to be ratified by the claimant community as a whole before the Crown will take measures to put that settlement into effect.

I have puzzled almost to the point of distraction over what the Crown may appropriately suggest as confidence building measures to break the stalemate which exists between the Runanga and the Alliance iwi groups. Recently I and my officials have followed as best we can the exchanges between the Runanga and Alliance iwi groups over a 'heads of agreement' to formalise the mutual commitments each will make to the negotiations process. I have received copies of the 'heads of agreement' proposed by the Runanga on 10 February and of the 'Working Party Agreement' signed by the Alliance iwi groups on 10 April.

I consider that reasonable progress towards a lasting settlement will not be possible without the agreement of both the Runanga and the Alliance iwi groups to a process or a working relationship that will meet the needs of both groupings and make progress towards settlement of the claims. The current debate seems to be constrained by each grouping's vision of the final structural arrangements rather than seeking to develop and enhance a working relationship that will allow us all to begin negotiation.

Given the discord between your groups, a set of protocols defining your working relationship and the process by which you will work together would probably be beneficial. To be effective, these protocols may need to go beyond a mere statement of best endeavours, but need not identify specific outcomes or results from your co-operation. In other words, those protocols need not establish fixed positions on some issues that may best be left for future debate and consideration amongst claimants as a whole. Many claimant bodies, when faced with the sheer magnitude of the issues which complex negotiations evoke, sensibly defer final determination of certain governance and benefit distribution issues to longer term processes. That may be what is appropriate here.

There comes a time when true leaders must recognise when to place aside internal differences and when to make decisions that are for the good of their people. It is my view that this has been required in Muriwhenua for some years now. As I hear of more people who have been associated with the claim becoming frail or passing away I frankly wonder whether their efforts to serve the community will ever be repaid in the form of responsible leadership to take their communities forward. You may think it impertinent for me to state this, but politicians like myself are apt to think about these things (and even judge themselves accordingly). Muriwhenua claimants have been poised to embark upon a new relationship with the Crown, one which offers both an honourable basis for the future and the promise of a better livelihood for Maori communities in the Far North. The Crown looks forward to this prospect as much as, I am sure, do the people of the Far North. Although the settlement of the claim will not address all of the issues of the Maori community in your region, it nevertheless will be an important element. I therefore restate that the Crown remains prepared to enter into the negotiation of the Muriwhenua claim and repeat my invitation for the Runanga and Alliance iwi groups jointly to participate in that process.

In my earlier proposal I had suggested that the Runanga and Alliance iwi groups could together establish a Negotiations Management Committee which would seek a mandate to appoint a small negotiating team to represent Muriwhenua claimants in negotiations with the Crown. I regret, despite their agreement in principle, the apparent inability of the Runanga and the Alliance iwi groups to reach agreement on how the proposal may be implemented in practice. I am now considering the alternatives, as indicated in our meeting in February. These include the idea of a hui process and/or ballot to appoint negotiators for each of the five groupings that collectively make up the Muriwhenua claimant community.

Accordingly, I propose that:

- the Alliance iwi groups and the Runanga each nominate a representative from each of the five groupings - Ngati Kuri;
Te Aupouri; Ngai Takoto; Te Rarawa and Ngati Kahu - to represent their respective interests;
- the Crown and claimant bodies jointly develop a public information strategy;
- the Crown and claimant bodies convene appropriate hui-a-iwi in the region to allow the people to endorse the Runanga
and Alliance iwi groups' nominations and appoint a total of five more people, one to represent each of the five tribal
- the Crown and claimant bodies begin a process of developing a Muriwhenua wide beneficiary register initially
drawing on the membership lists of each of the organisations currently involved in the claim process.

This would provide a total of 15 people to comprise a Negotiations Management Committee to oversee the negotiation process, appoint negotiators and report back to their constituent groups.

While the Crown does not normally fund mandating activities in advance, in this case funding would be made available to assist with the organisation of the proposed hui and the development of the beneficiary register.

The above proposal has the following features:

- it ensures that each of the main claimant bodies is guaranteed a place in the negotiations process;
- it retains provision for a test of accountability of mandate;
- it provides for the nomination and appointment of other individuals who may not be aligned to either the Runanga or
Alliance iwi groups;
- it initiates a process - the identification of individual claimants - necessary for basic governance arrangements to be
considered and to enable a proper ratification process to be carried out.

This proposal involves a greater degree of Crown involvement in claimant processes than is usually the case. I have therefore only reached this position after close consideration and concluding that it is consistent with the Crown's Treaty duty to facilitate Maori consensus.

I invite your views on this proposal as a means to establish common ground between your respective groupings and would appreciate you responding in writing within a fortnight on this proposed next step towards negotiations. I also advise that I consider it appropriate that the Crown's position regarding the initiation of negotiations be made public, and will place this letter on the public record two weeks after the date of this letter, by publication in English and in Maori in newspapers serving the region. Yours sincerely

Sir Douglas Graham KNZM
Minister in Charge of Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations

Comments about the letter may be sent to the Director, Office of Treaty Settlements, PO Box 919, Wellington, fax (04) 494 9801.


Kua whakahau e te Minita mo Nga Whakawhitiwhitinga Whakaaro i raro i te Tiriti o Waitangi, kia panuitia te reta kei raro nei, ki roto i nga nupepa e tukuna ana ki te rohe kereme o Muriwhenua, a kia panuitia hoki ki roto i te reo Ingarihi, me te reo Maori.

Ko te reta nei e whakatakoto ana i te whakaritenga whakaaro a te Minita ki te whakatu kaiwhakarite whai mana kokiri, ki te tïmata i nga whakawhitiwhiti whakaaro ki te Karauna mo te kereme Tiriti o Muriwhenua.

I te 3 o Haratua 1999, i tukuna te reta nei ki nga tangata, me nga roopu kua rarangitia, a kua tukuna ano ki a ratou roia:
- Rima Edwards,Te Runanga o Muriwhenua
- Graham Neho, Poari Kaitiaki o Ngati Kuri
- Rangitane Marsden, Te Wae Rangahau o Ngaitakoto-a-Iwi
- Walter Kapa, Te Runanga o Te Aupouri
- George Witana, Poari Kaitiaki Maori o Te Aupouri
- Anne Herbert, Te Runanga o Te Rarawa
- Margaret Mutu, Te Runanga-a-Iwi o Ngati Kahu

Ko te take a te Minita ki te panui i te reta nei, ki te whakamohio hangai atu ki nga kaikereme o Muriwhenua i nga whakaaro whakahaere a te Karauna e pa ana ki te mana kokiri mo te whakahaere i nga whakawhitiwhiti whakaaro.

E panui penei ana te reta:

Kua tata inaianei, te hipatanga o te toru marama mai i taku hui tahitanga ki nga mangai o Te Hononga Kereme Tiriti me Te Runanga o Muriwhenua, ki te whiriwhiri i te kaupapa i whakaarahia e ahau i nga marama mutunga o te tau 1998. Ara te kaupapa nei, ki te whakatu Komiti Whakahaere Whakawhitiwhiti Korero hono, hei tïmatanga korero i waenga i te Karauna me nga mangai kereme whai mana totika. Ahakoa i tautokohia te whakaaro mo te kaupapa, e papouri ana ahau i te mea kahore ano kia tae mai he tohu ki ahau, kua tau a koutou whakarite ki te mahi tahi, ki te kawe kia oti te kaupapa nei.

Kahore aku awangawanga kei te ngakau pono rawa atu koutou mo nga take pouri kua whakamohiotia mai ki ahau, i nga wa roa ki muri, mo te huarahi tika ki te whiriwhiri kia tau te kereme. Ara ano pea nga take, kua ngahoro te kotahitanga e mau ana i nga wa ki muri. Kei te whakapae ano etahi o koutou, na te kore whakaaetanga i te Karauna kia tu ko te Hononga roopu iwi, ko te Runanga ranei hei whakaoti, engari ki taku whakaaro, me whaiwahi tonu nga roopu e rua ki te whiriwhiri i te kereme, a ma te penei ra ano, ka noho pumau te whakataunga mo ake tonu atu. Ko etahi o koutou kei te tono kia mau tonu nga whainga a te Runanga me te roopu Hononga iwi, kia kaua hoki e ngaro i roto i te ngakau nui ki te whakatau ki te Karauna.

E marama ana ahau ki enei hiahia, engari e mohio ana ano ki nga here me nga tikanga whakaorite ka taea te whakauru atu ki nga whakaritenga whakatau, kia pumau hei whakataunga mo ake tonu, kia kore hoki e whakararua e nga whakarite ngakau nui. Otira me whakaae katoa nga iwi kaikereme ki tetahi whakataunga, hei reira ra ano ka whai atu te Karauna ki te whakamana, ki te whakaoti i taua whakataunga.

Kua puta te awangawanga, me te hiahia whakaware i roto i ahau, e whakaaroaro nei he aha nga tohu tika a te Karauna, ki te hanga maiatanga hei whawhati i te tumu kei waenga i te Runanga me te roopu Hononga iwi. Tata ake nei, i whai tika atu ahau, me aku apiha kaimahi, i te whakawhitiwhitinga i waenga i te Runanga me te roopu Hononga iwi, mo te 'kirimina matua' ki te whakamana i nga whakaaro pono kotahi hei tuitui i nga whakarite whiriwhiringa. Kua tae mai nga kape o te 'kirimina matua' kua whakaarohia e te Runanga i te 10 o Hui-tanguru, me te 'Kirimina a te Roopu Mahi' i hainatia e nga roopu Hononga iwi, i te 10 o Paenga-whawha.

Ko aku whakaaro,e kore e taea te whai kia anga atu ki tetahi whakataunga mo ake tonu, mehemea kahore te Runanga, me te roopu Hononga iwi e whakaae ana ki tetahi whakaritenga mahi whanaungatanga kia eke ki nga hiahia o nga roopu e rua, ki te haere ngatahi atu ki te whakatau i nga kereme. Te ahua nei, ko te mea kei te whakararu i te wananga inaianei, ko te tirohanga o nga roopu ki nga whakaritenga anga whakamutunga, kahore ke i te titiro ki te whai i tetahi huarahi mahi whanaungatanga, kia ahei ai tatou katoa ki te tïmata ki te whakawhitiwhiti whakaaro.

I roto i enei ahuatanga tautohe i waenga i nga roopu, tera ka puta he painga, mehemea ka hangaia e koutou he tikanga ki te whakamarama ka pehea mahi tahi ai koutou. Kia whai mana enei tikanga, me whaia he huarahi ki tua atu o te whakatakoto kupu whakakotahi, engari pai noaiho ki te waiho ake nga whakaaro e pa ana ki nga hua ka puta mai. Ina, kaua e whakaritea kia maroa rawa etahi ahuatanga, ka taea te whakatinana a te wa, ka taea ranei te waiho ma nga kaikereme e whiriwhiri, ka whakatau a te wa. He maha nga roopu kaikereme, kua tutaki ki enei take whakararu nui tonu, ka whakatarewatia nga mahi whakatau i nga tikanga whakahaere, me nga mahi tohatoha hua, ka tukuna ma nga whakahaere tuturu e whakaoti.Tera pea koia nei te huarahi totika mo enei ahuatanga.

Kua tae ki te wa, kia mau mohio nga rangatira motuhake, hei ahea whakataha i nga rereketanga o roto i a ratou, hei ahea hoki whai i nga whakataunga hei painga mo a ratou iwi. Ki toku whakaaro, koia nei te huarahi hei whainga mo Muriwhenua, a kua roa tonu tenei ahuatanga e penei ana. Ina hoki ka rongo ahau kua memeha, kua matemate ranei te nuinga o ratou ma i whaiwahi ki te kereme, ka whakaaroaro pono ahau mehemea ka tutuki pai a ratou whakapaunga kaha mo nga iwi, mehemea ka hapainga a ratou wawata e nga rangatira kia pakari ake nga nohoanga tangata. Tera koutou e whakaaro ana i te whakahïhï o enei korero, engari, he rite etahi mema paremata penei i ahau, ka whakaaro hohonu tonu mo enei take, ( ka whakawa penei ano i a matou).

I te tu rangatira tonu nga kaikereme o Muriwhenua, ki te hono atu ki tetahi tikanga whanaungatanga hou ki te Karauna, he tikanga ka tuku papa whai honore, ka tuku whakaari oranga pai ake mo nga kainoho Maori kei te rohe o Muriwhenua. Ka titiro whakamua atu te Karauna ki tenei tumanako, a, ki oku whakaaro, ka pera ano te tirohanga a ratou ma o Muriwhenua. Ahakoa e kore e kapi katoa, e te whakataunga, nga take o ratou ma nga kainoho o to rohe, ka noho take tino nui tonu te whakataunga nei. Na reira, ka whakahau ano ahau, kei te noho takatu tonu te Karauna ki te whakauru atu ki te whakawhitiwhiti whakaaro mo te kereme o Muriwhenua. Me taku powhiri ano ki te Runanga me te roopu Hononga iwi, kia whaiwahi ngatahi ki roto ki era whakawhitiwhitinga whakaaro.

I roto i aku whakaritenga moata ki muri, i whakahua ahau kia whakaturia e te Runanga me te roopu Hononga iwi, he Komiti Whakahaere Whakawhitiwhiti Whakaaro, ki te whai kia riro mai te mana whakahau ki te whakatu i tetahi roopu whakawhitiwhiti korero,hei mangai mo nga kaikereme o Muriwhenua, ki te whakawhitiwhiti korero ki te Karauna. I pa pouri ahau, ahakoa a ratou whakaaetanga matapono, ki te ahua kahakore a te Runanga, me te roopu Hononga iwi, ki te whakatutuki kirimini, hei whakatinana i nga whakaritenga. Kei te whakaaroaro ahau inaianei, i etahi ake huarahi, i raro i aku whakamohiotanga ki ta tatou hui i te marama o Hui-tanguru. Ko tetahi o enei whakaaro, he whakaritenga hui, he whakaritenga pooti ranei, ki te whakatu kaiwhakarite mo ia o nga roopu tokorima, ko ratou nei ka whakawhaiti hei roopu kaikereme mo te iwi o Muriwhenua.

No reira, e whakaritea whakaaro ana ahau:

kia whakaingoatia e nga roopu Hononga iwi me te Runanga tetahi tangata mo ia o nga roopu tokorima - Ngati Kuri; Te

Aupouri; Ngai Takoto; Te Rarawa me Ngati Kahu - hei mangai korero mo a ratou ake painga;

kia hangaia e te Karauna me nga roopu kereme he rautaki parongo tumatanui;

kia karangatia e te Karauna me nga roopu kereme nga hui-a-iwi tika i roto i te rohe, ki te tuku ma nga iwi e tautoko i nga whakaingoatanga a te Runanga me nga roopu Hononga iwi, a ki te whakatu kia rima ano nga tangata ake, hei mangai korero mo ia o nga roopu a iwi tokorima;

kia tïmatahia e te Karauna me nga roopu kereme, he whakaritenga ki te hanga rehita tangata whaipanga mo Muriwhenua whanui, me te mahi tuatahi ki te tango mai i nga ingoa kei runga i nga wharangi mema o ia roopu kei roto i nga whakahaere kereme inaianei.

I konei ka tu kia 15 nga tangata ki runga i te Komiti Whakahaere Whakawhitiwhiti Whakaaro ki te tirotiro i te whakaritenga whakawhitiwhiti whakaaro, ki te whakatu kaiwhakarite, ki te hanga purongo whakamohio atu ki a ratou roopu a iwi, a rohe.

Ahakoa ehara ma te Karauna e whakatinana a moni whakamua, i nga mahi mana kokiri, ka whakawhiwhia he putea mo tenei take ki te arahi i te whakahaere hui, me te hanganga i te rehita tangata whaipanga.

E whai ake nei nga ahuatanga ka puta i nga whakaritenga kei runga nei:

ka whakapumau ki ia o nga roopu kereme matua, he tunga ki roto ki nga whakaritenga whakawhitiwhiti whakaaro;

ka mau tonu he whakawhiwhinga ki te whakamatau mena kei te whakatau tika te mana kokiri;

kua whakawhiwhia he huarahi ki te whakaingoa, ki te whakatu i etahi tangata ake, tera kahore e herea ana ki te Runanga, ki nga roopu Hononga iwi ranei;

ka tïmatahia he whakaritenga - te tautuhi i nga kaikereme ngatahi - e tika ana mo te whiriwhiri i nga whakahaere kawanatanga, kia taea hoki te mahi i te whakaritenga whakamana totika.

I raro i enei whakaritenga, ka nui ake te whaiwahitanga a te Karauna, ki roto ki nga whakahaere kereme o te wa. Kua whakatau peneitia e ahau, amuri i aku tirohanga hohonu, ara he whakataunga e orite ana ki te ritenga Tiriti a te Karauna, ki te kimi huarahi whakaaetanga Maori.

Tenei ra taku tono kia tukuna mai o koutou whakaaro mo te whakaritenga nei, hei huarahi ki te whakatu papa patahi ki waenga i a koutou roopu, me taku tono whakaiti, kia whakautu atuhi mai koutou i mua o te hipatanga o te rua wiki, mo tenei whakaritenga whakaaro kia ahu whakamua atu ki nga whakawhitiwhitinga korero. Ka tuku whakamohio ano ahau, e tika ana ki ahau ki te panui whakamarama atu, i nga whakaritenga a te Karauna mo enei tïmatanga whakawhitiwhitinga whakaaro, ki nga minenga tumatanui. Otira, ka tukuna tenei reta hei tuhinga tumatanui, ka panuitia ki roto i nga nupepa o te rohe, i roto i te reo Ingarihi, me te reo Maori, hei te rua wiki a muri i te ra o tenei reta.

Naku noa, na

Ta Douglas Graham KNZM Te Minita mo nga Whakawhitiwhitinga Whakaaro i raro i te Tiriti o Waitangi Hoatu ou whakaatu mo te reta nei ki te Tumuaki o Te Tari Whakatu Take e pa ana ki te Tiriti o Waitangi, Pouaka poutapeta 919, Te Whanganui a Tara, waea whakaahua (04) 4949-801.