Ngati Raukawa Treaty claims settled

Last updated 18:10 02/06/2012

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The Crown has settled all outstanding historical Treaty of Waitangi claims with Ngati Raukawa.

A Deed of Settlement was signed at Aotearoa Marae near Te Awamutu today.

The Crown was represented by Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations, Chris Finlayson and the Minister for Whanau Ora, Hon Tariana Turia. The signing was witnessed by local Member of Parliament Louise Upston.

"The Crown failed to protect Raukawa from becoming landless and the lack of land and resources undermined the ability of the iwi to participate in new economic opportunities in its rohe," Finlayson said.

"This contributed to the economic, social and cultural impoverishment of Raukawa. Today's settlement rights the wrongs of the past and allows Raukawa to build a stronger future."

The Raukawa Deed of Settlement includes commercial redress totaling $50 million, including the value of the 2008 Central North Island Forestry Settlement.

The settlement returns culturally significant sites along the Waikato River and other areas as well as strengthening the commercial relationship between Raukawa and Mighty River Power.

"The government is committed to reaching just and durable comprehensive settlements so we can put the grievances of the past behind us," Mr Finlayson said. "This settlement is further progress towards concluding all settlements in New Zealand."

The Raukawa Deed of Settlement was ratified by the Raukawa community with support of over 94.42 per cent of those who voted and will now be implemented through legislation.

A copy of the Deed of Settlement including a summary is available on the Office of Treaty Settlements website.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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