Friday, December 14, 2007

The Wellington Tenths Waitangi claim to be settled - but is it really just...

The Wellington Tenths Waitangi claim to be settled - but is it really just?

Crown land is to be returned to Taranaki Whanui(Wellington). There is a long list of various lands in Wellington and Lower Hutt cities.

There will be financial and commercial redress: There will be opportunities to buy certain properties, including a conditional purchase of Defence force land at Shelly Bay.

Sale and leaseback on selected crown properties to a value of $120 million. Some sales will include buildings. Sold properties permanently leased back to occupying government departments. However these departments must consent to the sales.

First right of refusal on surplus land for up to 100 years from settlement. Would this be feasible, considering the long time period?

Crown will investigate possible sale of airspace above Wellington Railway Station and the rail corridor. Again, would this be feasible if a future National Government could privatise these areas?

There will be a cultural redress package, which could include the beds of certain rivers and streams; coastal marine areas,marginal strips of land; government buildings; and a number of historic reserves and parks. Quite frankly the Government doesn't have the right to grant the latter - they belong to all New Zealanders.

There will be deeds of recognition, in which the crown will have regard for the claimants views on certain parks and reserves.

The crown will consider Maori place names for certain places of significance, and Maori/Pakeha for other areas.

There will be other cultural redress, including the possibility of transfering three cultural sites near Pencarrow Lakes and placing powhenua on crown sites of cultural significance. Centre Point and Wellington Airport will be invited to discussions with the claimants.

After all the talk, will consideration be given to ensure that the original and historical owners of the land in Wellington and Lower Hutt cities be given a fair share of all compensation by way of cash or land? The Taranaki tribes in the mid-1830's usurped the land from a number of local tribes, who then fled into the interior of Manawatu and other areas, ie Ngati Ira? The Taranaki tribes themselves, had fled to Wellington for protection by the British Army from invading Waikato tribes. Justice must be seen to be given. If recognition of the rights of ancestors of the original owners is not given, there cannot be any rights of compensation for land allegedly taken from Taranaki tribes by the crown or private individuals in the 1830's and 1840's!

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