Prime Minister Seriously Misrepresents Meeting with Tribal Leaders | Dayle Takitimu

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(via GreenPeace.org) This week John Key has been reported publicly saying he had met with Ngati Porou and Whanau Apanui representatives last week and they had reiterated they were not opposed to progress or mining but wanted reassurance that it be done in a way that was environmentally- sustainable.

This is utterly untrue. As an attendee at that meeting I can confirm quite the opposite was communicated to the Prime Minister on behalf of Te Whanau a Apanui and Ngati Porou. Dr Apirana Mahuika and Rikirangi Gage both spoke strongly, articulately and passionately about the opposition of both Ngati Porou and Te Whanau a Apanui to the proposed oil drilling in the Raukumara Basin. The spoke about the absolute sanctity of the environment and the very real tribal concerns for our future generations. Dr Mahuika spoke about the protections afforded by Article II of the Treaty of Waitangi, and told the Government that they were in breach of their obligations. Mr Gage accused the Government of reckless disregard for the environment and noted the tribes obligation, as indigenous peoples and citizens of this country, to stand up and oppose activities that place our environment at such risk. Both reiterated that this was an environmental issue of concern to all New Zealanders.

The Prime Minister asked if Ngati Porou and Te Whanau a Apanui were opposed to mining and drilling for the sake of being opposed or whether that opposition was based on our concerns for the environment. We confirmed that our concerns for the environment were paramount to our opposition, and these concerns were well founded, given that many of those concerns had derived, in addition to our own research, from advice we had received, on a number of occasions, from Government officials, including senior officials within the Ministry of Economic Development.

John Key had pre-emptively dismissed the worth of the meeting, by telling media earlier in the day that it was a meeting simply to be polite rather than to take the concerns of the tribal groups seriously. Consultation that has been pre-empted in this manner is frowned upon internationally (by the United Nations Committee for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination) and domestically by the Waitangi Tribunal. In fact it is not considered consultation at all when the Government have a predetermined position presented as a fait accompli. Accordingly the whole meeting was a farce, simply so the Government could continue to say rubbish like this in the media, under the guise of consultation.

John Key implied the opposition to deep sea oil drilling by the Ngati Porou and Te Whanau a Apanui was ill founded. He indicated that in due time the Government could show that it was environmentally sustainable. This ignores the huge body of knowledge internationally and within New Zealand that accurately describes the risks involved with such activity. The tribes are not uninformed, quite the opposite it is the information about the environmental risks that drives the opposition, and empowers people to take a stand against the Governments propaganda in regards to this issue.

John Key tried to make out the opposition to deep sea oil drilling was uninformed we had great pleasure telling him that we got some of that information from his own scientific advisors. Perhaps he ought to take their advice or opinions more seriously.

Time and time again throughout this debate we have seen the Government continue to make statements that are not factual and later need to be retracted. For John Key to make this statement shows a lack of integrity, and is mischievous; unfortunately it is the same old colonial trick of trying to create division between tribal spokespeople and the tribal population they represent that we have seen for generations.

I can assure Te Whanau a Apanui and Ngati Porou that no such statement was made by any one representing the tribes at that meeting, and that all speakers spoke clearly about the united and steadfast opposition to deep sea oil drilling. The Government can’t just give us the marketing spin on this and think we’re going to forget the huge risks associated with deep sea oil drilling – we stand united, we stand opposed, we stand for our mokopuna and our environment – our stance is not decided by three year election cycles – it is decided by our common heritage and our common future. The legacy of John Keys government will have been to put our environment up for sale to the highest bidder; prostitution of our pristine coastline for hollow promises of meagre profits while the legacy of Te Whanau a Apanui and Ngati Porou will be of two peoples who stood to protect the environmental sustainability of the east coast for future generations of New Zealanders.’

6 COMMENTS

  1. It does seem that the government is using the “Iwi Leaders Group” as a sounding board for it’s policies and as a “go to” Maori group in order to avoid the people, especially those apposed to whatever the issue is. They used to go to the NZ Maori Council. I remember being at their meeting once when they were discussing rugby with whites only South Africa under apartheid. Most of those iwi leaders were in favour of continuing rugby tours with them but the urban delegates where most Maori were, were agin. The above Iwi Leaders must not allow themselves to be caught speaking for their iwi without consulting widely first.

  2. I wouldn’t listen to half the crap this lady says. She is so full of herself i have a screenshot of some very nasty stuff her and her group get up too. Screenshots fit for the Police.

    Dayle don’t kid yourself. You are a hypocrite and maori activist with your own agenda.

    from
    -Te Whanau A Apanui Registered Member

  3. What you are saying about ‘consultation’ from our show pony PM reminds me that Hekia Parata also said that the govt. has ‘consulted’ iwi leaders and their views are different from the banner wavers. Which iwi leaders she didnot say. You should tackle her on that one before the election. If Rikirangi Gage and Api Mahuika who are iwi leaders said get lost John Keys which ones said its OK? Politics has reached a low point when the PM can turn a ‘non-serious’ hui into a ‘consultation’ one. “Rena” which is only a spoon full compared to the Gulf of Mexico is a timely warning.

  4. to his honourable john key
    prime minister of nz

    i have a bad taste in my mouth that needs to be spat at you in the most politically incorrect way. since i stopped loathing,hating accussing and blaming you personally for the govts part in the murder of my son NICHOLAS WARD HARRIS
    9 jan 2011 on remand 2days later bashed to death by your wardens or the police
    i have been really tolerant and have been waiting to find out why how and wtf ????
    i mentioned to you on twitter tyme and time again about the documents police reports monitored recordings letters etc etc that my lawyer is not privilliged to having or seeing but i am aware the the wholeefricken govt and others have seen n read stuff i am ashamed of you and the injust way this fricken matter of MURDER IS BEING HANDLED BY THE GOVT DEPTS when the hell are you bastards gonna front the fuck up and all your fucken deeds are despictible sir ftw

  5. Kiaora Tangata Whenua .com!
    The PM Keys speaks with a fork tongue still ,he needs a few lessons on kaka dnt get him no where. All politicians lie there hasnt been an honest one yet.
    What can we do with this sort of humbug ? We need to find a constructive way of counteraction to these tactics of his. Maybe an official announcement from the tribes.
    Kaumatua Opposed to drilling deep sea

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