2 Mar 2010

Foreshore options discussed at Maori Party hui

12:02 pm on 2 March 2010

A meeting of the Maori Party's national council in Wellington at the weekend agreed MP Hone Harawira's position on the foreshore and seabed should be an option for discussion at hui being held around the country.

The first hui was held in Dargaville on Friday and will be followed by at least 20 more, Waatea News reports.

Party president's Whatarangi Winiata says the Tai Tokerau MP's position of Maori or tupuna title, no sale and access for all will be up for discussion at the hui.

However the National Council did not want the talks to be restricted to this option, he says.

"This is their property. We can't be dictating what it is that they should do. What we must try to achieve is give them maximum choice so that the legislation, the appropriate legislation is written."

Professor Winiata says one of the questions the iwi may have differing views on is what is meant by tupuna title and whether this would allow for co-management with the Crown for example.

He says the position of the council and Mr Harawira is not in contradiction to the view expressed by fellow Maori party MP Te Ururoa Flavell.

Mr Flavell says he supports the Iwi Leaders Forum and Crown officials meeting to work out a proposal for the Minister of Treaty Settlements to take to cabinet.