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Total Confusion On Plan Change 1 Withdrawal

Total confusion reigns regarding the withdrawal of the major North Eastern portion of the proposed Waikato & Waipa Plan Change 1 that has already gone out to public consultation, which closes on 8 March 2017.

One can see the always present hand of Paul Majurey - Chair of the Hauraki Collective of 12 Iwi whose Settlement is dragging on, and on, and on. Just what their Tainui neighbours think of this gross interference is completely absent from the confused reporting by Elton Rikihana Smallman on page 34 of today's Hauraki Herald. 

It appears that the Waikato Regional Council  was frightened stiff by the threatened legal action by the Hauraki Collective who consider that their putative interest in the area covered by the Plan Change was not recognised, nor were they consulted - hardly credible when one considers the effort that has been put into achieving Waikato-wide settlements over recent years.

After all the hoop-la that has accompanied the progress of this Plan change, and the consultation entered into with all iwi interests previously thought to have an interest in the area in question, it is remarkable that Paul Majurey and his cohort have suddenly found that their mana has been trampled on.

Staggering because of the long history of hugely expensive research entered into by the Office of Treaty Settlements, and the apparent agreements that had been entered into separating the respective interests of the Waikato (Tainui principally) and Hauraki claims.

Just how this spanner was thrown in the works at the last moment is anyone's guess, but I guarantee that there is some severe 'behind the scenes' recrimination going on amongst the traditional arch-enemies who have in the past laid claim to the Waikato and its environs on the one side, and the Hauraki Collective to the Waihou and Piako on the other. 

Clearly Mr Majurey regards the provisions of the Healthy River Plan Change that apply to the Mangatawhiri, and the Whangamarino Wetlands as infringing directly on the interests of his Collective. (see the Map URL that gives a far better picture of what is proposed) But just how valid is that part of the Hauraki claim when it has been though years of negotiation and boundary settling with their near neighbours (and ancient rivals) before arriving at this impase.

It is inconceivable that the Office of Treaty Settlements, and the Waikato Regional Council have endeavoured to 'slip one over them' while attemping to bring about the changes necessary to clean up the rivers, now grossly overdue.  

Naturally, it raises the question, as to just when Hauraki will ever be settled. Not, I suggest while lawyers and many others see the potential for extracting ever more extravagant fees for services rendered, and continue to nibble away at whatever neighbouring settlement they covet. I recall years ago eing told by David Taipari that the full Ngati Maru Claim really extended from "Matakana te Matakana" - work that out! It legitimately raises the question - will it ever be settled?

Meanwhile, potential beneficiaries are required to wait "just a little longer" before they begin to detect even a minute flow of benefits to which Hauraki claimants are long overdue.

And farmers on the boundary like Brent Willcox are left to sweat out just how they are expected to comply with completely different sets of requirements applying to their bifurcated farms.

For God's sake get off your high horse Paul, and stop inventing new ways to delay the  Settlement that we all so desperately wish to see in place. It is to be hoped that the Tainui, and other Waikato River iwi remain calm and collected in the face of this latest legal imbroglio. The time for games is surely over - end of story!



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