Moriori Claims Settlement Bill passes first reading

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Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Minister Andrew Little today welcomed Moriori to Parliament to witness the first reading of the Moriori Claims Settlement Bill.

“This bill is the culmination of years of dedication and hard work from all the parties involved. “I am delighted to reach this significant milestone today,” Andrew Little said.

“No settlement package could ever fully compensate Moriori who suffered such a magnitude of loss and prejudice. Through this settlement, the Crown hopes to go some way to atone for its past injustices, and to alleviate the acute sense of grievance experienced by Moriori. I am humbled that Moriori imi have accepted this settlement.

“The Moriori Claims Settlement Bill heralds a new relationship between Moriori and the Crown – one based on cooperation, mutual trust, and respect for Te Tiriti o Waitangi and its principles. It is my hope that this Bill will create a strong foundation for the continued restoration of the social, cultural and economic wellbeing of Moriori,” Andrew Little said.

The settlement package includes a Crown apology for historical breaches of the Treaty of Waitangi, the transfer of lands of cultural and spiritual significance to Moriori on Rēkohu (Chatham Island) and Rangihaute (Pitt Island) as cultural redress and financial redress to the value of $18 million.

It also comprises shared redress including the vesting of 50-percent of Te Whanga Lagoon, the establishment of Te Whanga Management Board, the development of customary fisheries regulations for the Chatham Islands, and the establishment of a joint planning committee for natural resources on the Chatham Islands.

The Moriori Claims Settlement Bill will put into law the Moriori Deed of Settlement, signed on 14 February 2020.

The Deed of Settlement, and a summary of the Deed’s contents are available at: https://www.govt.nz/treaty-settlement-documents/moriori/ .

The Moriori Claims Settlement Bill can be found at: http://www.legislation.govt.nz/bill/government/2020/0238/latest/LMS238051.html.

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