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Te Tatau Pounamu o Mataatua
Noho Whenua

Volume 1, Issue 1 January 17,1999

Me haere whenua atu!
Me hoki whenua mai!

We the Tangata Whenua of Te Moananui a Tairongo, have occupied land at Ohiwa Harbour since time immemorial. This panui seeks to give a better understanding of our recent actions to reclaim our ancestral lands For generations Ohiwa has sustained numerous hapu of the Mataatua Waka who can all place their origins within the ebb and flow of the harbour waters. This unique relationship that tangata whenua enjoy with Ohiwa was gravely impacted upon by crown confiscations which took effect on Jan 17th 1866.

We are concerned that the Ohiwa harbour and its surrounds will be privatised before the land has been restored to its rightful guardians

We have returned to our ancestral lands today to commemorate the day of shame 133 years ago when our land was confiscated by application of the New Zealand Settlements Act. Since that time our ancestors have been fighting for the return of the land through a variety of mechanisms including; legal battles in the Native Land Court and other courts of the Crown; the taking up of arms to protect the whenua for future generations and diplomatic appeals to various representatives of the Crown. The history of this struggle is well known . We are concerned that it not be forgotten in the current climate of Crown Imposed Treaty Settlements that would have Maori accept money for mana, and money as a substitute for whenua. We as descendants of those who fought and died for our land will not buy into this illusion of restoration of rights and obligations particularly as we watch our lands being privatised and sold to the highest bidder.

We are determined that our whenua will not become a playground for the rich absentee owners who visit two or three times a year. We are determined that those lands wrongfully taken should be restored to us the tangata whenua to care for the present and future generations of the peoples of Mataatua Waka.

Contrary to media reports our aims are simple and consistent with the historical demands of our tipuna. We seek to :
a) Educate the public Maori and Non Maori alike of the historical attachment by all of the peoples of the Mataatua Waka to the Ohiwa Harbour;
b) Educate crown appointed and mandated representatives of Maori (Kupapa) of the real effect of the current Treaty Settlement Framework;
c) Effect constitutional change to ensure that our rights and status as tangata whenua are protected for all time and incorporated at every level of government policy and decisionmaking that impacts on our way of life;
d) Have our land restored to the rightful guardians to preserve and care for present and future generations unborn.

What do we want?
Our stand is about:
a) Unifying under the Waka o Mataatua
b) Expressing our distaste for the privatisation of Maori land into foreign ownership
c) Expressing concern for Treaty Settlement Frameworks that substitute money for mana
d) Challenging Crown agencies who think they know better than the tangata whenua who live with the land
e) Expressing concern at the ongoing decimation of wahi tapu and sites of extreme historical and spiritual significance
f) Protecting taonga for future generation including ensuring that our food baskets are free from pollution and exploitation

He aha te kaupapa?
Contrary to media hype and manipulation our stand is not about:
a) Undermining hapu rights and obligations as kaitiaki
b) Maori bashing Maori
c) Maori bashing Pakeha
d) Hidden agendas
e) Mana munching
f) Bad Maoris not listening
g) Divide and Rule
h) Rangatahi having no respect for their elders

Ka warea te ware
Ka area te Rangatira
Hongihongi te whewheia
Hongihongi te manehurangi
Kei au te Rangatiratanga

Ignorance is the oppressor
Vigilance is the liberator
Know the enemy
Know the destiny
Determine our own Destiny

"We do want a settlement
We want our land back"

"Our stand is about right and wrong.
We know that we are right"

What can you do to help?

A) Photocopy this and send to your whanau and work mates
B) Join the occupation and bring a tent and other provisions
C) Korero with your whanau; hapu and iwi about these issues
D) Challenge your Trust Board or Runanga if they are signing away your rights
E) Challenge the concept of private ownership as a substitute for kaitiakitanga
F) Write to your local M.P. expressing support for our action
G) Organise direct actions in your own rohe around your own issues
H) Make a donation or a koha to our ropu

Te Tatau Pounamu o Mataatua
Noho Whenua
Contact Persons: Sharon Campbell; Tracey Johnson and Tame Iti.
Contact Phone Numbers
: 025-917-634, 07-315-4717

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