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Feedback form on 'Government Proposals for Consultation: The Foreshore and Seabed of New Zealand' from Moea Armstrong.

One way to fill in the government's silly on-line form ...

I believe there is no need for any legislation. It would be a modern breach of the Treaty of Waitangi to legislate over the rights of tangata whenua to their ancestral lands, which include foreshore and seabed.

I wish to register my opposition to any move by Government to do this in my name. As a Treaty educator it fills me with dread to have to add another breach to our already over-long list of Tiriti violations. My children have Maori ancestry and I defend their absolute right to their whenua including 100 per cent of any financial gain there is to be made from that whenua.

My message to Govt is this: Relax! Don't do it, when you want to make law.

I also believe that so many New Zealanders have been through our Treaty seminars that there is a greater understanding out there of Maori rights than the Govt gives us credit for. Workshop participants usually exhibit support for fairness, fair play.

Taking another chunk of land off Maori unilaterally, with all the economic benefits, is too transparent this time, and unacceptable to fair-minded Kiwis of either culture. We took the land - let's leave them the sea. Fiscal independence for Maori depends on it, and we should be supporting it.

Moea Armstrong
29 September 2003

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