Official Information Relating to Ngāti Kahu Treaty Claims from
1. Minister of Treaty Negotiations Finlayson
Minister of Māori Development Flavell
3. Office of Treaty Settlement
Te Puni Kōkiri
in relation to the decision to require Te Rūnanga-ā-
Iwi o Ngāti Kahu to carry out a reconfirmation of its mandate to settle Ngāti
94 items have been listed covering 244 pages
33 of which have been completely redacted (blacked out) – all are claimed to be
communications with the Crown Law Office including their response to an Office
of Treaty Settlements referral about
establishing a new Ngāti Kahu-wide
representative body for N
gāti Kahu’s treaty claims.
53 are partially redacted claiming to protect the privacy of individuals from
Haititaimarangai marae and Kauhanga marae and Crown employees; to protect
information provided in confidence; out of scope of the request; to protect legal
A large number of items have not been included. A further urgent request for 7 of
the clearly identifiable omissions has been made.
Summary of Content:
1. Following on from the failed attempt by the Minister of Treaty Negotiations in
2015 to remove the leadership of Te Rūnanga-ā-Iwi o Ngāti Kahu and have those
he prefers heading it, he sought help from
the Minister of Māori Development on
have Ngāti Kahu accept his 2013 offer for the full and final settlement of
Ngāti Kahu’s treaty claims.
The Minister of Treaty Negotiations, the Minister of Māori Development, Office of
Treaty Settlement staff and Te Puni Kōkiri staff are now working on removing the
Crown’s current recognition of Te Rūnanga-ā-Iwi o Ngāti Kahu’s mandate
because Ngāti Kahu will not accept their 2013 offer as a full and final settlement.
They have been told that 12 marae have agreed to accept it as a partial
settlement but are refusing to consider that as an option.
Three of Ngāti Kahu’s 15 marae, Parapara, Te Kauhanga and Haititaimarangai,
have told the government they will settle their own
hapū claims fully and finally
and separately from the Rūnanga.
4. The Office of Treaty Settleme
nts and Te Puni Kōkiri do not want to settle with
individual hapū because “the available redress is not equally distributed across
the rohe so multiple settlements would result in an imbalance between the hapū
and marae of Ngāti Kahu”. There is no evidence that they are considering
providing redress to each and every marae or hapū.
The Office of Treaty Settlements and Te Puni Kōkiri staff know that three marae
is only a minority of marae and that it is insufficient for them to claim that Ngāti
Kahu does not support its Rūnanga. They know they have to find another reason
to remove the Crown’s recognition of the Rūnanga’s mandate.
6. Office of Treaty Settlements
and Te Puni Kōkiri staff have invented a reason.
They have misrepresented the letters we sent to the Ministers, have ignored the
Ngāti Kahu Yellow Book and have falsely reported to the Ministers that we have
The Rūnanga considers it has a mandate only to negotiate a partial
settlement for Ngāti Kahu (that is the pre-1865 claims only); and
The Rūnanga does not consider its mandate requires it to represent the
interests of all hapū of Ngāti Kahu.
These officals assert “That position is a significant departure from the mandate
the Rūnanga originally sought from Ngāti Kahu and the Crown recognised in
2003.” They go on to falsely state “The Rūnanga has said it will not accept a full
and final settlement of all Ngāti Kahu claims.” They consider that is sufficient
reason to remove the Crown’s recognition.
7. The Crown Law Office is advising the Ministers and officials to proceed with great
caution and to take great care over the process they are using. They are
providing extensive legal advice (including the 33 redacted items listed above).
8. The Ministers, the Office of Treaty Settlements
and Te Puni Kōkiri are looking for
those who opposed Te Rūnanga-ā-Iwi o Ngāti Kahu in the Waitangi
Tribunal in 2012. It includes members of the three marae listed above.
9. The Office of Treaty Settlements has told them th
ey must represent all Ngāti
is advising them on how to set up a new Ngāti Kahu entity to hold a
Crown recognised mandate. It includes advice on the work they must carry out,
steps they need to take and the goals they need to achieve so that the Crown
can support them. The specific and detailed advice they provided has been
redacted from the information sent to us.
10. It is communicating with those people through a Crown employee who is a
member of one of those marae.
He has welcomed the Ministers’ support for them
“to wrestle the mandate from the Rūnanga”. He is reporting regularly to Maureen
Hickey at the Office of Treaty Settlements and asking her advice. Her responses
are mostly redacted from the information we received.
11. The Office of Treaty Settlements has organised at least three meetings with a
few individuals. At least one meeting
was held in Kaitāia and included the
Minister of Treaty Negotiations and another MP (Shane Reti).
Office of Treaty Settlements and Te Puni Kōkiri staff did not expect the
Rūnanga to agree to reconfirm its mandate.
The Official Information we have received provides the proof that the Crown and its
employees are attempting to divide and rule
Ngāti Kahu. They are supporting a small
number of individuals and advising them how to set up the Crown’s preferred iwi
entity for Ngāti Kahu with the Crown’s preferred individuals. Their purpose is to have
those individuals assist them to have
Ngāti Kahu accept their 2013 offer to fully and
finally settle all Ngāti Kahu Tiriti o Waitangi caims. They have been careful to exclude
any information relating to our successful court case against the Waitangi Tribunal or
our application for binding recommendations.