Topics: Land, Treaty Settlements

Te Kapotai hapū released from mandate

By Dean Nathan
  • Northland

Te Kapotai hapū is relieved at the news that they're to be released from a mandate held by the Ngāti Wai Trust Board to settle their treaty grievances. But Te Kāea understands they are but one of a number of hapū keen to be released from what's seen as a Crown imposition. 

The waters ripple at the home of the Te Kapotai at the news this Ngāpuhi subtribe are to be released from a mandate held by the Ngāti Wai Trust Board to settle their treaty grievances.

Patu Hohepa  (Te Kapotai / Ngāpuhi) says, “I think that the acknowledgement of Te Kapotai self-management can only be good, and Te Kapotai wants to maintain its genealogical ties to Rāhiri and to Ngāpuhi, that all of us.”

It's a controversial issue with the Waitangi Tribunal having already granted the request by a collective of hapū for an urgent hearing to investigate the Crown approved mandate they see as an imposition.

Huhana Lyndon (Ngāti Rehua / Ngāti Wai) says, “Ngāti Wai Trust Board should be asked about why they are only prepared to release Te Kapotai from the mandate when there are a number of hapu including Te Whakapiko, Te Waiariki and Te Patu Harakeke wanting out, because it was imposed on us without consultation in the first instance.”

While the Ngāti Wai Trust Board did not wish to comment on this matter claimants say this case has a major element of déjà vu, with similarities to the division in Ngāpuhi over the Crown's awarding of a mandate to Tūhoronuku.  More recently the tribunal has recommended these matters be returned to the control of the respective hapū.

Patu Hohepa, (Te Kapotai / Ngapuhi), “To me the issue is, the Crown is tramping all of over us of Ngāpuhi, Te Kapotai and all so the integrity of our hapū. Hapū are the only ones to speak for themselves, the government cannot do this.”

The Waitangi Tribunal is set for a judicial conference in upcoming weeks in preparation for the urgent hearing on this matter.