10 Feb 2012

Governnment accused of cultural treason

12:02 pm on 10 February 2012

Ngapuhi speakers have accused the Government of cultural treason for trying to sell shares in State energy companies.

The Government is holding its fourth consultation hui with iwi in Whangarei on Friday over its proposal for mixed-ownership.

About 100 people are attending the hui at Toll stadium.

Kaumatua from across Tai Tokerau told Deputy Prime Minister Bill English there should be no sale of shares in the energy companies before iwi concerns involving water are sorted.

Ngati Wai kuia Marie Tautari says the Government has never allowed Maori to exercise their rightful control over water since 1840 and selling the energy companies would be cultural treason.

Mr English told the hui the Government is committed to the Treaty and the protection it gives to Maori rights.