Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei reaffirm manawhenua stake in Auckland's CBD

By Harata Brown
  • Auckland

A Ngāti Whātua elder is putting their stake into the CBD of Auckland.  This comes after the Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei Trust filed papers in the Auckland High Court to seek clarification of the Crown's process of negotiating Treaty claims in Auckland, following other iwi making claim over Tāmaki.

Tāmaki Makaurau, it's highly sought after land by many.  But Ngāti Whātua say hands off!

Grant Hawke Rangatira, Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei says, "In Central Auckland, the CBD is certaintly Ngāti Whātua's."

Ngāti Whātua Orakei Trust chairman Phil Davis says, "The real reason why we filed this was to protect our manawhenuatanga."

Hawke chants an ancient prophecy about challenges his people will face in the wake of colonisation, and still sees the relevance of it today. 

Davis says, "We haven't got what we think we deserve is an answer so we are questioning their process."

Yesterday the Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei Trust filed papers in the Auckland High Court seeking a declaratory judgement on the Crown's negotiations process with Ngāti Pāoa and Marutūahu iwi and its proposal to transfer Crown surplus properties in the Auckland CBD. 

"It's only right that if they free up any land within that space that was gifted to them in 1840 (by Ngāti Whātua Tūpuna) by right it should be given back to the owners," says Davis.

This also comes a week after Māori King, King Tuheitia stated that he hoped to settle the Kīngitanga's claims in Tāmaki.

Ngāti Whātua o Ōrākei are part of a 13-cluster iwi under the Tāmaki Collective.  Yesterday the Minister of Housing, Nick Smith confirmed a Housing Accord relating to the Right of First Refusal to use disposed land for state housing purposes with the collective is being finalised.   

Minister of Housing Nick Smith said, "I remain confident that we are going to find a resolution those discussions are continuing and I can't comment more than that at this point."

The Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Chris Finalyson's office says that as the matter is before the court the Minister has no comment.