Sunday, June 16, 2024

Ngā Iwi o Taranaki and Crown sign redress deed

Ngā Iwi o Taranaki and the Crown have signed the Taranaki Maunga Collective Redress Deed named Te Ruruku Pūtakerongo, at Owae marae, Waitara today.

“Te Ruruku Pūtakerongo is the 100th deed to be signed since Treaty of Waitangi negotiations began, and the final redress deed to be signed in the Taranaki region,” said Treaty of Waitangi negotiations Minister, Andrew Little.

“Today is a historic moment for not only Ngā Iwi o Taranaki, the Crown, the Taranaki region, but Aotearoa New Zealand. It is also a significant step towards reconciliation between the Crown and Ngā Iwi o Taranaki.”

Ngā Iwi o Taranaki is the collective name for the eight iwi of Taranaki: Ngāti Tama, Ngāti Mutunga, Taranaki Iwi, Te Ātiawa, Ngāti Maru, Ngāruahine, Ngāti Ruanui and Ngaa Rauru Kiitahi. They represent approximately 60,000 members and an area of interest encompassing the whole of the Taranaki region.

The Collective Redress Deed has been named by the iwi as ‘Te Ruruku Pūtakerongo’, to reflect the settlement’s intention, which is ‘a commitment to bring about harmony or balance’.

“This is a very significant day especially for Ngā Iwi o Taranaki towards ultimately recognising their maunga in law as a person, a tūpuna, and as an indivisible and living being,” Mr Little said.

The Deed recognises the Crown’s historic breaches of the Treaty in relation to Taranaki Maunga, including the confiscation of 1.2 million acres of Taranaki lands.

Through Te Ruruku Pūtakerongo, Egmont National Park will be renamed Te Papa-Kura-o-Taranaki, meaning ‘the highly regarded and treasured lands of Taranaki’.

The National Park including Taranaki Maunga and the surrounding peaks will be vested in a legal person, named ‘Te Kāhui Tupua’ and will effectively own itself.

A representative entity made up of both Crown and iwi appointees, to be known as Te Tōpuni Kōkōrangi, will be established to act in the best interests of Te Kāhui Tupua.

Te Papa-Kura-o-Taranaki will continue to be managed by the Department of Conservation and the National Parks Act 1980 will continue to apply.

“Like the Taranaki proverb says ‘Taranaki Maunga, Taranaki Tangata. Taranaki is the Mountain and Taranaki are the people’, we all have a collective responsibility to actively protect the wellbeing of Te Kāhui Tupua and ensure the area and the people thrive,” Mr Little said.

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