They have fought some of the most crucial battles for Māori in recent history, but now the New Zealand Māori Council is at war with itself. A bitter row has erupted amongst senior members and it's quickly escalating with legal threats of defamation and dismissal.
The New Zealand Māori Council was established in 1962 and receives around $200,000 in taxpayer funding from Te Puni Kōkiri each year. But as the dispute unfolds at its highest level, legal aid has been suspended for the Council's TPPA claim. Legal aid is also under review for its Water claim.
Native Affairs reporter Maiki Sherman investigates.