Maori water rights claim dismissed
Wed, 27 Feb 2013 3:00p.m.
By Lloyd Burr
The Supreme Court has rejected the Maori Council’s attempt for a full investigation into the Government’s decision on water ownership rights.
Chief Justice Sian Elias has ruled the High Court was correct in dismissing the Council’s bid for a judicial review into the matter.
The Maori Council wanted to review how the Government had reached its conclusion that Maori had no ownership claims to the water and steam used by four state-owned energy companies to generate electricity.
The four - Mighty River Power, Solid Energy, Meridian Energy and Genesis Energy - are planned for sale.
Its bid was rejected last year by the High Court so the Council appealed to the Supreme Court.
But today, the Supreme Court ruled the Government’s consultation process with Maori was adequate and despite Maori interests and rights in particular waters, no one owns water and steam.
“The Supreme Court has concluded that the partial privatisation of Mighty River Power will not impair to a material extent the Crown’s ability to remedy any Treaty breach in respect of Maori interests in water,” the judgement says.
However, it did offer some consolation to the Maori Council.
“While the appellants have failed as to the ultimate result, they nonetheless succeeded on an important point of principle, namely that the Crown was bound to comply with the principles of the Treaty before deciding to sell the shares.”
Govt moves ahead with asset sales agenda
The decision allows the Government to progress with its partial asset sales programme and a renewed timetable will be presented to Cabinet next week.
Finance Minister Bill English says he welcomes the decision which now allows 49 percent of Mighty River Power to be floated between April and June.
“We are pleased to be getting on with what we were elected to do,” he says.
However, this morning, Mr English told crowds at an Auckland Chamber of Commerce luncheon that if the Supreme Court ruled in favour of the Maori Council, asset sales would be shelved.
“I guess if you can't sell them you have got to keep them. That's our plan B,” he said.
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4/03/2013 8:10:56 a.m.
Jane I can't help but notice that you are really cut up about this race thing. Let me be one of many to explain it to you, legitimate circumstances has made it this way. Some Maaori argue it's a modern day example of mixed model ownership I.e Iwi and hapuu independently collectivizing to represent whats politically inshrined to be theirs. Most cases it's individual Iwi and or hapuu yet people like you generalize to exaggerate your point of view in the same way commentators accuse all settler NZ decendents as being racist, thieves and a whore lot of degrading adjectives that describe our not so well shameful history.
3/03/2013 10:28:22 p.m.
Craig Jemmerson wrote:
Sharples Said to Key after the loss for the Maori Party and the Water rights, Please dear give me some more of the blanket, that we fleeced off the sheep, As my bare bum is un covered just like the new ciggy packet will look.
1/03/2013 8:59:44 a.m.
If propriety rights can be used to blackmail people into paying for use of water as in Ironman Lake Taupo, isnt that just as big a threat as one race owning water.
28/02/2013 1:13:04 p.m.
Proprietry rights people...NOT owning water...Its the proprietry rights that is being fought for...Refer to the TREATY OF WAITANGI if you are a little less educated on the subject.
28/02/2013 10:36:58 a.m.
Quite right, and what a waste of the Courts time.......blankets & muskets ?!
28/02/2013 9:24:21 a.m.
@THE DR : The Maori party MPs are all just talk. They seem a gutless selfish outfit who will not resign no matter what their 'talk' is because they wouldn't want to reduce their big salaries and perks just for the sake of their principles.
28/02/2013 12:27:52 a.m.
When you buy water from a supermarket or any other place you are not paying for the water. You are paying for the cleaning the bottling, the wages of the staff and all the other bits they do. The same goes for water rates it's not the water you pay for but the cleaning, cost of pumps, the cost to keep the pipes running and wages for the people who take care of it all.
28/02/2013 12:08:32 a.m.
@Christopher : If you think that 'Labour stuffed us for 10 years', you are not only wrong, but are simply repeating this government's silly spin, lies and propaganda.
27/02/2013 10:13:42 p.m.
@G and EDDIE. If no one owns the water why do pakeha sell it in supermarkets?
27/02/2013 9:40:21 p.m.
All the anti progressive and moaning lefties will be singing 'Cry me a river' tonight, not only that they will aslo being doing it - which is great - more money for the asset sales.
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