7 Aug 2012

Iwi says Govt request undermines respect for law

2:00 pm on 7 August 2012

A Tauranga iwi says the Government's request for the Waitangi Tribunal to report a month earlier than it intended goes against what the iwi teaches its children about respecting the law.

Te Runanga o Ngai Te Rangi chairman Charlie Tawhiao was among those who attended a hui in Wellington on Monday, which Maori Affairs Minister Pita Sharples called to discuss the issue of Maori rights and interests in water.

Mr Tawhiao says that what the Government did is the opposite of what citizens are expected to do.

He says he spends a lot of time talking to young people about the need to obey the law, and why legal processes should be followed, and for the Government to short-circuit the legal process undermines the discussions he and other iwi leaders have with rangatahi.

Maori Party co-leaders Pita Sharples and Tariana Turia were to meet Prime Minister John Key on Monday evening to discuss what took place at the hui.