Farmer challenge on race-based policy welcomed

The Waikato Regional Council is set to defend a complaint laid with the Human Rights Commission alleging its controversial Plan Change 1 aimed at improving water quality gives iwi special treatment.

A North Waikato land owner has complained about policy 16 of the plan which he claims would allow iwi to develop land and change the land use when other cultures with similar land are denied that right.

By the end of June, the project had cost up to $19.3 million and council has approved further funding in its long-term plan of up to $9 million. Submissions on the plan are due to be heard by a panel of five independent commissioners later this year.

We applaud land owners sticking up for their rights, especially when race-based policy is about to put them at a disadvantage.

Littlewood treaty talk in Rotorua

For those of you living around Rotorua, amateur historian Carol Smyth will speak on the Littlewood treaty next Sunday, August 26, at 2pm, at Te Runanga Tea House.

Carol said she was instantly hooked when she discovered there was a mismatch between the “official” English version of the Treaty of Waitangi and the original Te Tiriti in te reo.

The document, which was written by British Resident James Busby and has only one word different from Te Tiriti, was found by the Littlewood family in Pukekohe in 1989, and is thought to be the 'lost' final English language draft

For many years it was on display with the original treaty text at Archives New Zealand in Wellington. Last year, it was excluded from the new He Tohu founding documents display.

Despite an official appraisal which said that the Littlewood treaty was either the lost final draft or a copy, policy makers have ignored the document.

Tickets for next Sunday’s talk are $10 for members of Friends of Rotorua Museum and $15 for non-members.


Ngai Tahu demand talks on fresh water

Fallout from the Government's decision to set up an alternative group with which to consult on fresh water issues continues, with Ngai Tahu now demanding direct engagement immediately with the Crown over water issues relating to most of the South Island.

And it is throwing into question what "partnership" means in terms of the Crown's engagement with Maori.

The former Government consulted closely with the Freshwater Iwi Leaders Group on issues relating to freshwater.

Three years ago, that group proposed a $1-billion “capacity building” fund plus tribal ownership of fresh water, of all Crown owned river and lake beds, and the water columns in each.

It is reassuring to see the assumption of treaty partnership in question.

This is because there is no sign of any partnership in the Treaty of Waitangi, and the requirement for the Crown to act reasonably and in good faith should apply to all citizens, and not just one racially selected group.

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