The withdrawal process triggered by Te Whakaminenga o Rereahu (TWoR) to amend the mandate for the settlement of claims within Te Rohe Potae has failed to reach the required 75% support.

This means that the existing mandate will continue with the Maniapoto Māori Trust Board (MMTB).

Following a series of consultative hui in 2016, Ngāti Maniapoto, by vote of 73%, gave the MMTB a mandate to negotiate with the Crown to settle the historical claims of Ngāti Maniapoto (“the mandate”).

In 2019, following an urgency hearing with the Waitangi Tribunal, the Tribunal also ruled in support of MMTB’s mandate.

In order for any grouping within Te Rohe Potae to initiate the withdrawal process, that is a desire to be withdrawn from the MMTB’s mandate, 350 signatures of support were required to convene a Special General Meeting (SGM) to consider whether the mandate should be amended.

Following the SGM held on Saturday 1st May, where both TWoR and MMTB presented information to whānau, voting closed on Friday 7th May.

Independent elections company Electionz.com provided final results showing 50.45% supporting a change to the existing mandate and 49.55% disagreeing with any amendment.

MMTB Chair, Keith Ikin says that the low voter participation rate was dissappointing with less than 3000 votes cast in total.

“It’s vital that all whānau engage in this process, ask questions and exercise their right to vote. This is a critical time for us, it is one of the most significant matters for our people to consider for many generations. We encourage all whānau to get informed, attend hui and participate in these voting processes.”

Following the voting results, the Board are seeking to meet with TWoR, endeavouring to find a way forward together.