Nga uri o Ngāti Maru (Taranaki) witnessed the first reading of the Ngāti Maru (Taranaki) Claims Settlement Bill today at Parliament, Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Andrew Little says.
“Ngāti Maru is the final iwi in Taranaki to settle their historic Treaty of Waitangi claims. I want to acknowledge Ngāti Maru and the Crown negotiations teams for their hard work to reach this important milestone, Andrew Little said.
“I am honoured to have been a part of getting this Bill through to first reading and look forward to supporting it through the House.”
The historical grievances of Ngāti Maru arise from dispossession, displacement, and dislocation following the Crown’s confiscation of half their traditional lands in the 1860s. Lacking an effective way to retain collective title, Ngāti Maru continued to experience further loss and erosion of tribal structures during the nineteenth century. The Crown’s poor management of reserves set aside for the iwi ultimately deprived Ngāti Maru of control and ownership of remaining lands.
“Crown actions and omissions against Ngāti Maru have resulted in loss of most of their ancestral lands and the dispersal and displacement of their people.
While no Treaty settlement will ever be able to compensate Ngāti Maru for the true measure of the loss they have suffered, I sincerely hope this settlement will go some way to atone for these injustices,” Andrew Little said.
The settlement includes an acknowledgement, apology and redress for the Crown’s historical breaches of the Treaty of Waitangi.
Ngāti Maru will receive financial and commercial redress valued at $30.00 million, including $26.35 million in financial redress, and a Crown forest valued at just over $3.65 million.
Cultural redress includes the vesting of 16 sites of deep cultural significance, including properties located in Tarata, Pūrangi, and two sites along the Tangarakau and Whangamomona Rivers.
Through this settlement the Crown also acknowledges and apologises for its imprisonment and exile of Ngāti Maru people engaged in peaceful protest at Parihaka.
The settlement provides for Taranaki Regional Council and Te Kāhui Maru Trust: Te Iwi o Maruwharanui (the Ngāti Maru post-settlement governance entity) to enter into a joint management agreement in respect of the Waitara River and its catchment.
This will include a role for iwi in the environmental monitoring of the Waitara River.
“This package recognises the longstanding association Ngāti Maru has with the land in their rohe and provides an economic foundation that I hope will benefit many generations of Ngāti Maru to come,” Minister Little said.
Ngāti Maru (Taranaki) is a Taranaki iwi whose rohe is centred on the inland Waitara River valley, and extends from Taranaki Maunga east to the upper Whanganui River.
Ngāti Maru has approximately 3,000 registered members.
ENDS – For further information contact: Talisa Kupenga 027 405 7231
Notes for editor:
· The Bill gives effect to Te Hiringa Taketake – the Ngāti Maru (Taranaki) Deed of Settlement – signed on 27 February 2021 in Tarata, Taranaki.
· A copy of the Deed of Settlement is available at https://www.govt.nz/browse/history-culture-and-heritage/treaty-settlements/find-a-treaty-settlement/ngati-maru-taranaki/.