18 Dec 2022

Dozens of groups urge govt to pick up pace on co-governance

7:49 pm on 18 December 2022
Anjum Rahman says the government should stop "fear mongering"

Anjum Rahman says co-governance is a matter of justice and equity. Photo: Supplied

More than 60 organisations have signed an open letter calling on the government to honour the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

It comes after Māori Development Minister Willie Jackson earlier this month said the government's co-governance work might be put on hold.

"We still haven't consulted with New Zealand. We've consulted with some Māori but other people haven't had an opportunity; Pākehā people, ethnic people. That's a lot of work to do," Jackson said.

"We're also getting questions about it and so in terms of time I was hoping for us to have it signed off by Christmas but we're way off in terms of timelines and so there's a lot of work still to be done."

Anjum Rahman from Inclusive Aotearoa Collective Tāhono said co-governance was a matter of justice and equity.

The group, which includes major organisations like the Mental Health Foundation and Citizens Advice Bureau, said the work also honoured Te Tiriti o Waitangi and must continue.

She said the government needed to progress policies put forward by iwi and hapū.

It was sad that progress that should have been made seems to have stalled and petition supporters expected that all political parties would honour commitments that they made.

She said the number of signatories on the letter showed people backed the idea.

Cabinet is due to make a decision on whether to pause its co-governance work tomorrow.

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