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An open letter to the Maori Party from Dayle Takitimu

Written By: - Date published: 12:10 pm, September 9th, 2010 - 13 comments
Categories: foreshore and seabed, Maori Issues, maori party, Mining - Tags:

Apologies for the delay in posting this. The earthquake has been dominating.

Dear Maori Party,

The unilateral opening up of our ancestral lands and seas to drilling and
mining by this Government is the most significant threat to the survival of
our peoples and our way of life we have experienced in this generation.
Whilst the foreshore and seabed issue, which essentially conceived the Maori
Party, was essentially about conceptual ownership of the coastal marine
space the granting of permits and exclusive prospecting licences is a real
and tangible threat to the livelihood of our people throughout the
country.

For those iwi that want drilling and prospecting kei te pai, that’s their
decision. For those of us who do not, and who are concerned about the
environmental impacts of these activities on our tribal territories who
are concerned about our mokopuna and the crazy risks the Government are
taking with our whenua and moana (and illegal because they unjustifiably
breach the Treaty of Waitangi) we have a long, hard political fight ahead of
us.

We are trying to get information flowing between iwi, trying to lobby
politically, trying to get accurate information into the public domain and
trying to throw everything we can at the government in terms of legal or
civil action. Its a hard fight, but we have an obligation to our mokopuna to
do it these activities are so far removed from our worldview they are
dangerous and they are about exploitation beyond our means (and beyond the
means of future generations).

The big question in light of this the struggle is where are the Maori
Party?

Why haven’t we heard from you?

Why are you silent at a time Maoridom needs you most? In the corridors in
Wellington,

Why can’t we hear you advocating for us?

Why can’t we see you in the media?

Where are you?

What do we need to do to be on your radar?

Is being Maori and being a Treaty partner with an issue not enough?

Apart from one media message on 3 June 2010 by Ururoa, and attendance at our
Taumata Korero in Auckland by Hone in August we have heard NOTHING from the
Maori Party; where are you?

Major submissions were due today on the draft Energy Strategy which proposes
more drilling and more mining. We pushed and pushed our populations to make
submissions, and we had to rely on mainstream organisations to help us with
analysis and templates where were you?

Whanau ora is choice; but what about the wellbeing of our mokopuna when
their whenua is too barren to grow kai?, when their moana is so polluted
they can¹t get a koura?, when their ancestral whenua has been raped and
plundered so much their whanau has no oranga what then?

What do you need from us to step up to this issue and make some noise on our
behalf? We can hear the Greens, loud and clear. We can¹t hear you.

Ko te inoi atu kia akoutou, me kaua koutou e noho wahangu i runga i tenei
kaupapa; he whakahirahira rawa atu tenei ki a tatou.

Dayle Takitimu
Lawyer, Te Whanau a Apanui

13 comments on “An open letter to the Maori Party from Dayle Takitimu”

  1. Jenny 1

    .
    Is the Maori Party Confidence and Supply Agreement with National approaching it’s use by date?

    In my opinion Tere Harrison’s open letter to the Maori party represents the start of a fight for the soul of the Maori Party. For them to ignore it, will be at risk of eternal (political)damnation.

    In my opinion the Maori party is now being constrained in its full advocacy on behalf of their constituents by its tactical coalition with the right wing National Party.

    Both of the two Maori Party MPs mentioned by name in Tere Harrison’s letter, Te Uroa Flavell and Hone Harawira have expressed in public, sentiment’s that the coalition agreement is only valid up to the 2011 elections.

    Any followers of my comments on this blogsite would be aware I support the present tactical accomodation of the Maori Party with the National Government.

    In my opinion this was a brilliant and unexpected tactical move by the Maori Party. This tactical move dumbfounded their opponents inside both of the two major parliamentary parties who sought to ignore and belittle their contribution and keep them away from the levers of power, pushing them into the parliamentary sidelines.

    For the Maori Party to have succumbed to being sidelined in this way would have meant giving up any hope of having any independent influence in the house, which would have meant ignoring the mandate of the many Maori who supported them into parliament.

    This tactical accomodation no matter how necessary, comes with a cost. The Maori Party leadership are fully aware that a second term of coalition with this right wing tory government will see the destruction of their party.

    In my opinion this would be a sad loss, to the detriment of our unique parliamentary system.

    The loss of the Maori Party from our political landscape, would be a loss not just felt by, Maori, but Pakeha, Manuhiri, all. Only the most dyed in the wool bigot, or one eyed sectarian would try and deny that the Maori Party have made positive and worthwhile contributions to parliament.

    The Maori Party’s tactical coalition with National, if carried beyond the first term will see the destruction of the Maori Party.

    No serious commentator of politics would deny this.

    The question is are the Maori Party MPs willing to pay this price?

    Are any Maori Party MPs preparing to follow in the footsteps of a La Jim Anderton or Tau Henare to see the destruction of their party and sit out their careers on the back benches of one or the other of the two major political parties?

    • Jenny 1.1

      It is becoming very clear that with the detonation inside the ACT Party, the Maori Party if it can stay together through this transition has the potential to be King Maker after the 2011 parliamentary election.

      If the Labour Party are serious about contesting this election with the aim of recovering the Treasury Benches from the Nats then they must start lobbying the Maori Party with the purpose of seeking an accommodation that best serves the interests of their core constituencies.

      On current polling this is the only way to ensure a Labour led government is returned to parliament in 2011.

      • Ron 1.1.1

        and the moment the labour Party DO “…seek an accommodation that best serves the interests of their core constituencies….” we’ll see a repeat of the Iwi/Kiwi billboards.

        • Jenny 1.1.1.1

          That the right will reach for racist tactics to win, is no excuse to give in.

          These sorts of tactics need to be confronted head on and exposed for what they are.

          There is nothing to be gained by pandering to this sort of right wing attack, and wheeling out your own ‘lite’ version of Brash’s Orewa speech, in the hope of courting the red neck vote.

          This approach is proven to be counterproductive.

  2. the Maori Party will not achieve any worth while achievment whilst it is with National. the Iwi posters at the previous election should surely indicated how the majority of National supporters think . Its in their DNA.The late great Theodore Herzle said :That scratch any Right-Wing party and a racism is not far down. If the Maori Party is to survive it will have to ditch the two present leaders and come back to the Left. If it keeps playing second fiddle to National its doomed,and that would be a shame!.

  3. kriswgtn 3

    Sharples is in China if thats any help
    Sell out

  4. gobsmacked 4

    Where are the Maori Party? In the comfy chair …

    http://china.globaltimes.cn/diplomacy/2010-09/571156.html

    Sharples praises China’s treatment of its ethnic minorities. Presumably he thinks Clark and Cullen should not only have passed the FSA, but arrested the Hikoi leaders too.

  5. Green and Maori Party leaders, all been MIA for months.
    When was the last time anyone saw any of them?

    • Carol 5.1

      I saw both Russel Norman and Metiria Turei on Parliament TV today. Turie asked some questions about the nnew FS&S Act.

      http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1009/S00168/questions-and-answers-9-september-2010.htm

      4. METIRIA TUREI (Co-Leader—Green) to the Attorney-General: Does he stand by his statement that the Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Bill “treats all New Zealanders including Māori without discrimination”?

      Hon CHRISTOPHER FINLAYSON (Attorney-General): Yes.

      Metiria Turei: Does he agree with the then Acting Attorney-General that this bill creates discrimination on the basis of race because Māori customary title is weakened by a range of conditions, but freehold title is not?

      Hon CHRISTOPHER FINLAYSON: I acknowledge the Acting Attorney-General’s report. He said that such limitations as existed on customary title in comparison with other forms of title were reasonable, and he referred to issues relating to access and alienability, which are the very points that I have been discussing with iwi and hapū around the country. Iwi and hapū do not want customary title to be alienated, and they accept the need for public access.

      Metiria Turei: How is treating title differently on the basis of race not discrimination on the basis of race?

      Hon CHRISTOPHER FINLAYSON: Customary title is different from freehold title, but the fact that it is different does not mean there is discrimination. It is a very valuable form of statutory title, which has been developed. As the member would know, in the Ngāti Apa case, the Court of Appeal held that the scope of customary title could range from what it called usufructuary rights to something approaching fee simple. We have looked at the incidence of ownership and we have brought together various incidents in this new form of customary title. That is not discriminatory, and it reflects what iwi and hapū have been asking for.

      Metiria Turei: How does he think it is fair that Māori customary rights can be overruled by mining concessions, but the 12,500 private titles in the foreshore and seabed cannot?

      Hon CHRISTOPHER FINLAYSON: With mining interests we are trying to deal with transitional arrangements as we transition from a form of Crown absolute ownership to a noownership regime, and one has to have transitional arrangements in those circumstances. As to the 12,500 private titles, I remind the member of what I said yesterday, which was that two wrongs do not make a right and that removing the rights of landowners, including Māori and Pākehā who have freehold title, simply creates another injustice.

      Metiria Turei: Will there be any restrictions on those 12,500 private titles in the foreshore and seabed being sold into foreign ownership?

      Hon CHRISTOPHER FINLAYSON: There will be restrictions so that if, for example, there is a proposal to sell a farm, then presumably that will have to go through the approval processes and appropriate channels. What we are dealing with is the proposition that there will be no new freehold title in the area we are talking about.

  6. Jenny 6

    .
    A Primer on the foreshore and seabed Marine Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Bill

    Moana Jackson:

    …the Prime Minister’s statement that the Bill will be a full and final settlement of the issue is simply inaccurate because rather than removing the injustice it actually compounds it.

  7. Swampy 7

    Is there anything this guy is saying that isn’t already covered by the laws that apply to the whole populace?

    Is he asking for something special for Maori because of the Treaty?

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