Monday, May 25, 2009

Waitaha group oppose meridian and Ngai Tahu

Who is providing kaitiakitanga to the Waitaki River?

Came across this information, where Ngai Tahu have withdrawn their environment court appeal to the north bank tunnel project, over the weekend.

"A second major opponent of a new $900 million power scheme on the lower Waitaki River is withdrawing its opposition after reaching an agreement with the project’s proponent, Meridian Energy Ltd. Te Runanga o Ngai Tahu and its Arowhenua, Moeraki and Waihao runanga will withdraw their Environment Court appeal against the north bank tunnel concept scheme and work with Meridian to complete a mitigation agreement."

and in the comments section I found this from the Waitaha group

"Firstly is common belief of the Crown and their Agents namely Local Authorities’, Government Departments and Major Local and International Companies that the since the Ngai Tahu Treaty Settlement that Ngai Tahu are the only consultation group contained within the Settlement.Although Waitaha were legislated against their wishes into the Ngai Tahu Settlement Act 1998, there are many Nga Uri (descendants’) of Waitaha who have not registered with Ngai Tahu Whänui but exercise the right to maintain their identity, cultural values, tikanga and kawa of Waitaha under The New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990, the Rights: The Resource Management Act 1991 further more defines Local Authority obligations to Maori ; Resource Management Act 35A: Duty to keep records about iwi and hapu; The Local Government Act 2002 where it clearly defines under Section 14 Principles Relating to Local Authorities Clause (d); The Treaty of Waitangi Article Two (2) clearly defines property rights as Hapu, Whanau and Individual rights. Te Runanganui O Waitaha me maata Waka Inc are supporting others in the objection to this Project."

So I followed their link to here

"Te Runanganui O Waitaha & Maata Waka Iwi Authority Inc. Provides for the wellbeing of the members of the Runanganui. Membership is automatically bestowed on the Uri of the Hapu of Kahea, Waitaha, Kähui Tipua, Rapuwai and Häwea who are willing to participate by their attendance at meetings and be bound by the kawa of Waitaha and shall be subject to the rules and regulations or by-laws of the Runanganui."

The website is pretty good. Only 750 visits to the website. I don't have any issues if these people choose to highlight certain whakapapa lines, after all we have always done that. And it is in our nature to vote with our feet when we disagree with some leader or approach. Ngai Tahu can dismiss this group but I cannot see them going away.

My interest was stimulated because I am opposed to damn dam's (or tunnels) being built. Ngai Tahu put a very strong case for the protection of this river, but now have conceded and are negotiating with meridian, who is still opposing this north tunnel? Do we just have to accept the defilement of our awa further? Can we appeal or is this the best we can do.
If we can't protect this river, who can? Who is providing kaitiakitanga?

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