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Customary interests of Ngati Porou hapu recognised

Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Andrew Little. Photo: RNZ.

The Crown has recognised 14 customary marine title areas along the East Cape and East Coast in nga rohe moana o nga hapu o Ngati Porou, Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Andrew Little announced today.

This recognition reflects the determination of nga hapu o Ngati Porou to safeguard their longstanding customary rights and the continued exercise of mana by nga hapu o Ngati Porou in their rohe moana.

Customary marine title recognises customary rights and interests that whanau, hapu or iwi can show they have had in an area of the takutai moana (common marine and coastal area) from 1840, in accordance with strict legal tests.

“I would like to thank nga hapu o Ngati Porou for their commitment through this long journey since reaching agreement with the Crown to recognise their customary rights and interests in the marine and coastal area in 2008,” says Little.

“Nga hapu o Ngati Porou have contributed extensive research and collection of historical evidence which, along with the Crown’s historical research and public consultation, assisted the Crown in being satisfied the legal tests for customary marine title were met in these areas.”

Ngati Porou were the only iwi that reached an agreement with the Crown under the now-repealed Foreshore and Seabed Act 2004.

When that Act was reviewed and repealed, the Crown undertook to honour its existing commitments to Ngati Porou.

Following the passage of the Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Act in 2011, the original agreement was updated to reflect features of the new Act, including the new legal test for customary marine title.

The agreement was given effect by Ngā Rohe Moana o Nga hapu o Ngati Porou Act 2019.

Customary marine title enables the holders to exercise certain rights through involvement in resource consent and Conservation Act processes, customary fisheries management, the ownership of non-Crown minerals and taonga tūturu in the title area, and protection of wahi tapu, such as urupa (grave sites).

The customary marine title orders take effect today.

Customary marine title

Customary marine title is not fee simple ownership, but an expression of customary rights and interests in part of the common marine and coastal area.

The marine and coastal area (takutai moana) is the land from mean high water springs out to the territorial limit. In other words, it is the “wet part” of the beach, and the seabed out to 12 nautical miles.

Customary marine title does not affect general public access, fishing (subject to bylaws being made to protect customary fishing areas), or navigation rights.

However, the right of public access in the common marine and coastal area does not give any new rights to the public to cross private land without permission in order to reach the marine and coastal area.

Applications for customary marine title under the Nga Rohe Moana o Nga Hapu o Ngati Porou Act (or under te Takutai Moana Act) are determined by the High Court or the responsible Minister depending on who the application was made to. The legal tests, and the thresholds for evidence, are the same.

The Nga Rohe Moana o Nga Hapu o Ngati Porou (Recognition of Customary Marine
Title) Order 2020 can be found on the legislation.govt.nz website. 

The Order has the full list of the customary marine title areas.

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Tom Ranger

Posted on 03-02-2021 10:22 | By

@Mein Fuhrer. The maori version never conceded sovereignty. The U.N recognizes indigenous language as the version that has been agreed to. Otherwise it’s not as two parties have not agreed and understood the terms of the contract. This simply recognizes that (at least) over 150 years ago until now. Some hapu have had and will have access to certain sites and resources.

Management or ownership

Posted on 02-02-2021 08:28 | By

With some people along this stretch of coastline, where access is hard enough to gain for recreational coastline users. This may well mean the establishment of private/No access stretches of coastline to casual visitors to the area. It’s reasonably well known that some believe that they are already gatekeepers to our shared coastline and will threaten violence to warn off visitors.

And once again

Posted on 02-02-2021 06:41 | By Mein Fuhrer

The government breaks the treaty of waitangi when the cheifs ceded soverienty to the crown, and all became equal under new Zealand law. No special privileges or rights for anyone. The tribunal greviance industry has twisted the treaty to suit their own greedy agenda.