Green MPs back calls for work to stop immediately in Pūtiki Bay following unnecessary police presence

Green MPs Dr Elizabeth Kerekere and Chlöe Swarbrick strongly support the calls by Ngāti Paoa for Auckland Council to immediately step in to stop works happening in Pūtiki Bay/Kennedy Point today.

Dr Kerekere and Swarbrick are urgently visiting Waiheke today as a large police presence has descended on the peaceful protest / occupation.

“For our kaumatua, wāhine, tane, rangatahi takatāpui whānau today, the safety and protection of our precious kororā – little blue penguins – is urgent,” Green Party MP for Māori Development Dr Elizabeth Kerekere said today at Pūtiki.

“Developers are likely breaching their resource consent and are damaging the habitat and threatening the lives of this endangered species.

“Auckland Council has not honoured Te Tiriti o Waitangi throughout this and I will be calling for the Minister of Local Government Nanaia Mahuta to revoke the power of councils who are not honouring Te Tiriti.

“The works must stop. Our people are putting their bodies on the line to protect our taonga and whenua,” Dr Elizabeth Kerekere said.

Auckland Central MP Chlöe Swarbrick echoes the calls to stop development and protect the kororā, and joined the protectors at Pūtiki Bay.

“For months, I’ve been working with Ngāti Pāoa Uri, the Local Board and Council on protection of Pūtiki. My correspondence with the Hauraki Gulf Forum saw them formally confirm that the kind of ocean sprawl we will see with this Marina is irreconcilable with the Marine Park’s intent, let alone Ngāti Pāoa’s rāhui placed sixth months ago.

“Just this week, the developer confirmed to me that no development or destruction would take place above the high water mark until an independent review of the Penguin Protection Plan. This would also require a variation to the Resource Consent and another opportunity for Council to inspect it.

“They also said there would be no removal of rocks below the high water mark until an expert had evaluated safety of the kororā. The actions today bulldoze over this.

“Economic growth at the cost of our taiao – our environment – is outrageous and unacceptable,” Green MP for Auckland Central Chlöe Swarbrick said.

“Moving these rocks is like taking away the foundations of someone’s house. Development must stop until Ngāti Paoa, as kaitiaki of the land, are satisfied Te Tiriti is being honoured.”

ENDS

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