History set to be made for trio of Taranaki iwi as treaty bills poised for final readings
Hundreds of people from Taranaki will be in Wellington to watch history being made on Wednesday.
The third and final reading of Treaty of Waitangi settlement bills for Taranaki, Te Atiawa and Ngaruahine iwi groups will take place in Parliament.
The historic day also marks the beginning of a new chapter for each iwi. After leaving behind the years of hurt and hard work to negotiate a settlement deal with the Crown, each group was moving towards a renewed sense of tino rangatiratanga or self determination.
Taranaki Iwi Trust chairman Tokatumoana Walden said the final step in the legislative process, which will see the bill made law, completed decades of work many people had put into making the settlement a reality.
* Historic settlement for Te Atiawa signed
* Final reading of three Taranaki iwi settlements cancelled after allegation NZ First 'stonewalled' them
* Ngaruahine $67.5m Treaty settlement signed
* Taranaki treaty settlement bills back on track to pass into law
* Taranaki Iwi Trust signs up for a prosperous future
While he acknowledged treaty settlements were "political deals" Walden said the interests of the iwi had always been paramount.
He said the commercial and cultural opportunities which have already presented themselves to the iwi had helped focus the group towards its future, rather than looking back on its past.
"It is about self determination," he said.
"We're starting to establish our footprint back on the Taranaki landscape."
"That's part of the healing."