Ngati Aukiwa is fighting for their land

The Crown and Kahukuraariki Trust Board have signed an Agreement in Principle to settle the historical Treaty of Waitangi claims of Ngatikahu ki Whangaroa. The settlement offer includes acknowledgments of, and a Crown apology for, the Crown's historical breaches of the Treaty of Waitangi and its principles, and the return of eleven Crown-owned sites of cultural and historical significance, including Stony Creek Station and the adjacent Thomson and Clarke Blocks, and the Stony Creek stock and plant. [ Government Press Release ]

When Michael Cullen, the Minister in Charge of Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations, arrived for the singing Taemaro Bay, on the Far North's east coast, on Saturday (22nd Dec.), he had to be protected from angry protesters after being verbally abused and jostled.

A spokesperson for Ngati Aukiwa who oppose the agreement, Wilfred Petersen jnr, said most of the about 200 people at the beach were against the arrangement. "We didn't want them signing it on our land." He said the Ngati Aukiwa opponents' position had not changed and it would continue to press its own claims to reclaim Stony Creek station and whenua for its hapu. Ngati Aukiwa have been opposing Office of Treaty Settlements (OTS) negotiations with the Ngatikahu ki Whangaroa Trust Board. Ngati Aukiwa, who claim ancestral ownership of the property, do not recognise any trust board authority to negotiate with the Crown through OTS over the future of Stony Creek.

Links: Ngati Aukiwa | Ngatikahu ki Whangaroa | Cullen forced to flee signing by angry mob (NZ Herald)

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