Parliament will get the opportunity to make the Treaty of Waitangi a stronger part of our nation’s laws with a Members’ Bill drawn today, the Green Party said today.
“This is a real opportunity to stop any more unfair confiscations of what is left of whenua Māori,” Green Party Te Tiriti o Waitangi spokesperson Catherine Delahunty said.
The Public Works (Prohibition of Compulsory Acquisition of Māori Land) Amendment Bill was drawn from the ballot at Parliament today as a Members’ Bill.
“This Bill was inspired by Patricia Grace and her whanau in Kapiti who were threatened with confiscation under the Public Works.
“The Waitangi Tribunal has been clear that Māori have been discriminated against as a result of the Public Works Act. This Bill would amend the Public Works Act to specifically protect land that has customarily been held by Māori from being acquired by a Minister or local authority for public works. This would mean that no Māori land can be taken without consent.
“So much land has been lost, and what is still under Māori freehold and customary title should be protected from more Crown confiscation.
“Compulsory acquisition in the Public Works Act has cut across Article Two of the Treaty of Waitangi, which guarantees rangatiratanga.
“It is time for the Crown to properly honour the Treaty, and I would love the support of all parties across the House on my Bill,” Ms Delahunty said.