An initial Crown Settlement Offer was received by the Whakatōhea negotiators on behalf of the Whakatōhea Presettlement Claims Trust in early June. Negotiations with the Crown have been focused on achieving our aspirations of mana tangata, mana whenua and mana moana. Negotiations have also focused on the Crown acknowledging the Whakatōhea experience of raupatu and Crown engagement and the construction of a settlement package that realises the Whakatōhea Transformation Framework.
The key components of the Crown offer were:
- A Crown Apology based on an agreed historic account;
- An ‘airing of grievances’ process;• Transfer of Public Conservation Land up to 5000ha across 30 sites;
- The ability to co-author with DoC a chapter in the Conservation Management Strategy to determine the parameters of DoC management on a 10 yearly cycle over the remaining Public Conservation Land;
- Relationship agreements with government agencies;
- A financial redress package of $90 million dollars comprising a cash payment and funds for reserve land development, cultural revitalisation, te reo revitalisation, and education.
The negotiators did not accept the Crown offer on the basis that two of the three key planks (mana tangata, mana whenua, mana moana) of the negotiation process so far had not been adequately addressed. While the transfer of public conservation lands and the chapter in the CMS would enhance the Whakatōhea expression of mana whenua, the negotiators did not see in the Crown offer mechanisms which allows Whakatōhea to build their capacity or a sustainable economic base in their rohe. These factors are essential to ensure a robust and enduring settlement that sustains Whakatōhea into the future. The Whakatōhea Presettlement Claims Trust and the negotiators continue to meet with the Crown to enhance the offer and achieve the vision ‘Kia rangatira ai nga uri o te Whakatōhea’.