Historic Waitangi Tribunal ruling should be taken seriously by Government

The Government needs to engage meaningfully with the historic decision from the Waitangi Tribunal’s inquiry into the Te Paparahi o te Raki Treaty claims, said the Green Party today.

The Government needs to engage meaningfully with the historic decision from the Waitangi Tribunal’s inquiry into the Te Paparahi o te Raki Treaty claims, said the Green Party today.

In a major decision released today, the Waitangi Tribunal held that Maori did not agree to give up sovereignty to the British Crown in 1840 but rather agreed to share power and authority.

“This is one of the most significant decisions from the Waitangi Tribunal and cuts to the heart of New Zealand’s constitutional debate,” said Green Party Tiriti o Waitangi spokesperson Catherine Delahunty.

“This should be acknowledged as a significant determination and it affirms the views, commonly held by Maori since the signing of Tiriti o Waitangi, that they did not cede sovereignty.

“Rather than dismissing the ruling out of hand, Treaty Minister Chris Finlayson now has an obligation to engage with the Waitangi Tribunal on the implications of this ruling for the Crown.

“The ruling is actually very positive for New Zealand and opens the door for more positive engagement on Te Tiriti and a sounder basis for redress,” said Ms Delahunty.

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