Tēnā koutou katoa,

Much of 2018 was absorbed by working towards the finding of the Tribunal Inquiry for an iwi-wide vote on whether there is support for the Whakatōhea Pre Settlement Claims Trust to continue to negotiate to reach a settlement.

Below are some key points to note

  • The results of the vote released in November of last year vote showed majority support for WPCT to continue to negotiate a settlement.
  • The Trust has never opposed a Waitangi Inquiry, just not at the expense of delaying negotiations.
  • The Trust has always sought to engage with processes that could support our aims for reconciliation. Our view is that these would be more useful if they were designed by Whakatōhea for Whakatōhea. 
  • The vote illustrated that an independent inquiry by the Waitangi Tribunal was important for a significant number of Whakatōhea.
  • Since the vote, the Trust has advocated for the Crown to make an exception for Whakatōhea and ensure that any settlement should not close the door on a Waitangi Tribunal Inquiry taking place. This would allow us to meet the aspirations expressed by the majority who want to continue negotiations and bring them to a conclusion, and those who want a Tribunal inquiry.
  • The Crown has agreed to explore what this option could look like and the Trust is supporting this process. This approach would allow:
    • Claimants to take forward our claims within the context of the Waitangi Tribunal
    • The Trust to take forward our settlement in the context of the Crown Negotiations
  • The Trust is also committed to continued engagement with hapū and Whakatōhea generally to broaden the support base for a settlement.

Should you have any questions, we encourage you to discuss them with the Trust. 

Nā māua, nā

Graeme Riesterer