Unanimous decision by the 5 judges to dismiss the Maori Council’s appeal.
The sale of Mighty River Power will proceed – John Key said that if the decision was this month then they would have it floated by the end of June. Bill English is hopeful of getting it done by Budget Day, May 16, so that he can present how his estimates of how much capital will be raised ($6 billion best guestimate – including Solid Energy…) are affected by reality.
3News has best coverage:
the Supreme Court ruled the Government’s consultation process with Maori was adequate and that no one owns water and steam.
“The Supreme Court has concluded that the partial privatisation of Mighty River Power will not impair to a material extent the Crown’s ability to remedy any Treaty breach in respect of Maori interests in water,” the judgement says.
However, it did offer some consolation to the Maori Council.
“While the appellants have failed as to the ultimate result, they nonetheless succeeded on an important point of principle, namely that the Crown was bound to comply with the principles of the Treaty before deciding to sell the shares.”
So the Government may have to offer redress for Maori interests in water, but they can do so in other equivalent and meaningful ways if need be.