Hapu plans to fight Treaty settlement

DEENA COSTER
Last updated 05:00 18/08/2014

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Three Te Atiawa hapu are vowing to fight on despite iwi representatives signing off on a Treaty settlement worth $87 million last week.

Otaraua, Manukorihi and Ngati Tawhirikura hapu have met several times to discuss their options since the deal was signed on August 9 at New Plymouth's Rangiatea campus.

About 80 hapu members also took part in a protest at the venue before the ceremony started.

Ngati Tawhirikura chairman Glen Skipper said it would take time for the groups to develop a clear strategy but all were committed to stopping the deal.

He said although a lot of the current discussion was taking place behind closed doors, future protest action had not been ruled out to send a message to Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Chris Finlayson about opposition to the settlement. "There's got to be a public campaign," he said.

Manukorihi's Andrea Moore said although each hapu had different views about what protest might be considered appropriate she felt there were still opportunities for the hapu to take a stand. "The signing was just a ceremony, there's still a process that it has got to go through."

She said any decisions made by the groups would also be informed by legal advice, which the groups would have to fund themselves.

Te Atiawa's settlement was supported by 77 per cent of those who voted.

The next stage in finalising the deal is for a bill to be introduced to Parliament.

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- Taranaki Daily News

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