On Monday 27th September, the Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations (Minister Little) and Minister for Māori Development (Minister Jackson) advised that the Maniapoto Treaty Settlement ratification results demonstrated sufficient support from our people to enter into settlement with the Crown.
“We are satisfied the ratification process was carried out in a robust manner and provided all adult members of Ngāti Maniapoto with the opportunity to receive information about, discuss, and vote on the Deed of Settlement” say Ministers Little and Jackson.
Less than four weeks ago, the Maniapoto Māori Trust Board (MMTB) confirmed ratification results for the Maniapoto Treaty Settlement and proposed Post Settlement Governance Entity.
All whānau aged 18 and over who whakapapa within Te Rohe Pōtae, were asked to vote on three resolutions pertaining to their support for the Maniapoto Deed of Settlement (DOS) package, the proposed Post Settlement Governance Entity (PSGE) to receive, hold and administer settlement assets, and the transfer of fisheries assets from MMTB to the new PSGE. Ratification results confirmed support for all three resolutions; 84.35% support received for the DOS, 82.53% for the proposed PSGE and 82.44% support for the transfer of fisheries assets.
MMTB Chair, Keith Ikin, believes that although the results seemed evident, it’s pleasing to receive confirmation that the Crown has recognised and acknowledged the strong support provided by our people.
“We had the highest voter participation (37.07%) from our people that we have ever had, with a very strong majority in support.”
“As a Board, we have reflected on the efforts of many generations of our people through to those who over the last 30 years, have engaged in the Waitangi Tribunal and Treaty settlement process. Their contribution has bought us to this day. The legacy they leave for us is one of opportunity to set out our own future for all within the rohe.”
Now that Ministers are satisfied that sufficient support has been achieved, the PSGE, Te Nehenehenui, will be established, a signing ceremony for the Deed of Settlement will be held and the establishment trustees will sign the Deed of Settlement.
Given Covid alert levels are uncertain, a ceremony date is yet to be confirmed.
“This is a significant day for all of us within Te Rohe Pōtae. It will be an opportunity to come together and chart our aspirations for the future. The challenges of Covid will mean that we will need to work in a way that ensures the safety and wellbeing of our people.”
Following the signing of the Deed, a bill will be introduced and read three times in Parliament before being officially made a law. Once legislated, all financial, commercial and cultural redress will be transferred to the PSGE.
“Our expectation is that the settlement will become legislation within 18 months of the signing of settlement.
The key focus for MMTB now is to work with our people to take the settlement forward. The transition from signing the Deed to setting out our future direction, is a critical time for all of our whānau. It’s vital that we engage with our people on a five-year plan to provide understanding and clarity on the direction going forward.”
A copy of the initialled Deed of Settlement and PSGE Trust Deed is available on our website at www.maniapoto.iwi.nz/treaty-settlement/maniapoto-deed-of-settlement-post-settlement-governance-entity-2/