F&S Articles 2017

DEFEND YOUR BEACH

As you and your family head off to the coast this summer, you might want to consider how long it will be before Maori tribal groups are dictating access rights to your favourite beach.

Few holidaymakers will realise that ownership of the beach they are visiting is under claim. It doesn’t matter where it is in the country, or how many generations of family and friends have been holidaying there, multiple claimants are trying to convince the High Court and the Minister of Treaty Negotiations, that they have exclusively used the area since 1840.

But before you dismiss the possibility of such claims succeeding – because the area has always been so popular with the public – consider this. The former Minister, Chris Finlayson has offered a Customary Marine Title to a tribal group that claimed exclusive use of an area of coastline that was used as a public road for almost 100 years!

Under Section 58 of the Marine and Coastal Area Act, claimants must furnish evidence that not only have they used and occupied the area from 1840 to the present day without any substantial interruption, but that their use has been exclusive.

Unbelievably, Ngati Pahauwera in the northern Hawke’s Bay claimed these conditions were fulfilled, for an area of coast from the Waikare River to the Waihua River, even though in 1840 they were living 100 km away in Mahia. Not only that, but the area they claimed to have used exclusively, was the main route for travel and trade between the Hawke’s Bay and Gisborne right up until the inland road was built in the 1930’s.......

Continue reading Dr Muriel Newman’s very concerning message in the latest NZCPR newsletter here > https://www.nzcpr.com/defend-your-beach/#more-24980


A VIOLATION OF THE MARINE AND COASTAL AREA ACT

The facts clearly deny that Ngati Pahauwera have had the required exclusive and continuing use and occupation of this part of the coast as required by Section 58 of the Act – the Mohaka River mouth being in the middle of their claim.

There is no reason to believe that they have had “exclusive occupation and use” since then, as by law, the coast has been publicly owned since 1840,

In view of these UNDENIABLE HISTORICAL FACTS it is both surprising and disturbing that the former National Party minister of Treaty Settlements, instead of throwing out the claim on the grounds that it clearly does not qualify for Customary Marine Title (as he did for numerous other claims), offered this tribe a Customary Marine Title.

This recommendation for a Customary Marine Title over the coast from the Waikare River mouth to the Waihua River mouth to Ngati Pahauwera is, in the light of the facts mentioned above, a violation of the Act as they cannot show continued and exclusive use and occupation without substantial interruption of any part of this coast from 1840 as required by the Act. It will now be over to the new Minister of Treaty Settlements, Labour’s Andrew Little, to deal with this shambles, and turn it down, as it clearly does not qualify.......

Read the LISTED FACTS in Dr Hugh Barr’s well researched article here > https://www.nzcpr.com/a-violation-of-the-marine-and-coastal-area-act/#more-24962

TRIBAL CONTROL OF NEW ZEALAND’S COAST

If anyone was hoping the election would deliver some form of reprieve from the hundreds of overlapping claims for the foreshore and seabed, resulting from National’s disastrous Marine and Coastal Area Act, they will be sorely disappointed.

The only politician to campaign for a law change was Hone Harawira, leader of the Mana Party, and he wanted Maori control of the entire coastline: “I want people to know that a vote for me is to return the foreshore and seabed into Maori hands”.

The new head of the ruling Labour Party’s Maori caucus, Willie Jackson, claims the country has moved on from the foreshore and seabed debacle: “This waffle about foreshore and seabed is exactly that. I think most of our people don’t care – that’s why they voted against the Maori Party. What’s done is done, what’s gone is gone. We will never, ever do that foreshore and seabed stuff again.”

Hone Harawira’s response to these comments was derisory: “Now you’re a dirty low down skunk. You need a kick in the arse for saying that our people don’t care about the foreshore and seabed being stolen. We did then, we do now and we always will”.

Between them, tribal groups have lodged almost 600 claims under the Marine and Coastal Area Act, covering every square inch of New Zealand’s coastal marine area. That’s the distance between the average spring high tide waterline and the 12 nautical mile territorial limit. Included is the airspace above the area, the water, and the subsoil, bedrock and mineral wealth below.

Altogether, almost 10 million hectares of the country’s most precious natural resources is now under claim. That’s equivalent to more than a third of the land area of New Zealand.......

Continue reading Dr Muriel Newman’s alarming NZCPR newsletter here > https://www.nzcpr.com/tribal-control-of-new-zealands-coast/#more-24682


NEW GOVERNMENT MUST REVIEW THE FORESHORE AND SEABED SHAMBLES (29/10/17)

It is now over six years since the racist Marine and Coastal Area (MACA for short) Act came into force, under John Key’s National Government. The goal of the Act was give Maori tribal groups the right to claim control of New Zealand’s publicly owned foreshore and seabed. To date it has proved very difficult for tribal groups to obtain customary rights to the foreshore and seabed. Only one highly unusual case, in a very remote offshore area, has qualified so far.

In the MACA Act, the strongest type of privatised seabed title is called Customary Marine Title (CMT). To qualify, a tribal group must show that it has “exclusively used and occupied the coastal area from 1840 to the present day, without substantial interruption” (Section 58 of the MACA Act). It gives major private property rights to any tribal group that meets this very stringent condition.

There are two different processes that a tribal group can take to qualify. The first is secret negotiations with the Crown, (Section 95) which, being secret is much cheaper in legal expenses and so has been usually chosen. It also removes groups opposing the claim from actively participating, no doubt perceived as a big advantage by the tribal groups.

However the Crown does not have to accept an applicant, and, of course, must not accept them if they do not meet the required conditions. So far, the Crown has dismissed a significant number of claims, showing it had serious doubts about the cases it has investigated.......

Continue reading Dr Hugh Barr’s informative NZCPR guest commentary here > https://www.nzcpr.com/new-government-must-review-the-foreshore-and-seabed-shambles/#more-24674


TRIBAL GROUPS THREATENING THE PUBLIC’S FORESHORE AND SEABED (14/9/17)

In April 2017, the six year window in which to lodge MACA tribal claims closed. It was followed by an enormous tsunami of new claims.

The negotiating process under the Act is either by secret negotiation with the Minister, Christopher Finlayson, or through the High Court, where the tribal group has to convince a judge that they meet the conditions of exclusive occupation and use, wahi tapu, (the right to exclude the public from parts of the claim), protected customary rights, and other private property rights provided for in this Act.

An enormous number of claims for secret negotiation with the Crown, said to be over 500, have been received. These appear to cover all the coasts of mainland New Zealand, out to 12 nautical miles, the mainland territorial sea, shown on the map. It covers over 100,000 square kilometres in area. Claims often overlap other claims, sometimes doubly and triply.

The contrast with the number of claims lodged before the 3rd April is stark. Only about 30 claims to secret negotiations were received in the previous six years, and only about eight for the High Court process. A number of secret negotiation claims were turned down by the Crown because they did not qualify.

Even more disturbing, this tsunami of claims suggests collusion between tribal groups to flood the system, presumably to create strong pressure on the wobbly National Government to recognise such so-called “rights”.....

.....This sorry state of affairs over the Marine and Coastal Area highlights just how far New Zealand has degenerated in the nearly nine years of National Government rule from being a democracy to being a place where people claiming to be of Maori descent from a tribe living on the coast have race-based rights that other citizens do not have....

Read Hugh Barr's full very informative article here > http://breakingviewsnz.blogspot.co.nz/2017/09/hugh-barr-tribal-groups-threatening.html

NEXT STEPS IN COASTAL CLAIMS   (2/7/17)
The Minister of Treaty Negotiations has advised that public submissions will be called on claims being considered through the Direct Negotiation pathway, but unlike the High Court submission process, no fee will be required.

One group that has been through the Direct Negotiation process is the Northern Hawke’s Bay iwi Ngati Pahauwera, which is presently deciding whether to accept the Deed of Agreement that has been negotiated with the Crown. In particular, the Independent Assessor’s report on the case provides some useful information about the sort of considerations that will be involved in determining the validity of these marine and coastal area claims.

Since the closing date for claims in early April, the Attorney General and the High Court have been working on procedures to rationalise the process for dealing with the claims, especially since so many claims are overlapping, with some submitted to both the Minister and the High Court.

Accordingly, the country has now been divided into 21 application groups, for case management purposes. These are labelled ‘A’ to ‘U’ on maps that have been provided by the High Court.

All of this information is now posted on the COUNTERING COASTAL CLAIMS CAMPAIGN page of our NZCPR.com website , providing a comprehensive resource for the claims process, with updates added as they comes to hand.

In particular, the Campaign page contains links to the newspaper advertisements of claims, to the claim applications lodged with the High Court (by CIV number), to the High Court maps of all of the claims to the coast, and to the High Court spreadsheets containing map references and claimant group information including contact details. A list of all claims lodged with the Crown for Direct Engagement is also provided, as is the link to the Ministry of Justice website which provides details of the processed claims.

During the six years since the Marine and Coastal Area Act was passed, the only reported High Court claim to have been finalised was CIV-2011-485-806 for an area to the south west of Stewart Island covering two Muttonbird Islands. With only the Attorney General opposing the claim, the Judge found in favour of the applicant group.

That’s why the NZCPR believes that strong public opposition to all claims is crucial.

Accordingly, we are helping to cover the tens of thousands of dollars in application fees and other costs that fishing and recreation groups are incurring – on behalf of the New Zealand public – to fight these claims. While Maori claimants can receive over $400,000 in taxpayer assistance to prepare their cases, those opposing them have to pay $110 to the High Court for each claim.

With almost $30 million allocated to the claims process in this year’s budget alone, it is a gross injustice that taxpayers are being forced to fund groups who want to exploit the coast for their own selfish ends, while those who want to oppose their greed are not only not eligible for any financial assistance at all, but are forced to pay! If you would like to help those who will be standing up for us in the Court against those well resourced claimants..........

Read what is at stake in Dr Muriel Newman’s latest NZCPR newsletter here > http://www.nzcpr.com/next-steps-in-coastal-claims/#more-23280


NEW ASSAULT ON ACCESS TO COASTAL AREAS  (7/717)
The National Party's desire to pander to the minor Maori Party led, in March 2011, to the Marine and Coastal Area (MACA) Act. It gives major property and other valuable rights to any Maori tribal group that can prove that it has "exclusively used and occupied an area of coast from 1840 to the present day" (S 58 of the act). Only tribal groups can apply.

This is a difficult condition to meet, because many tribal groups lived near the coast, where they could collect fish. Tribal areas often overlapped. From the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi, in 1840, when New Zealand became a British colony and adopted British law, the territorial sea, out to 3 nautical miles from the coast, was Crown (i.e. publicly) owned, with the public having free access to most of it, just as it was in Britain.....

Continue reading Hugh Barr’s alarming article here > https://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/comment/94453163/hugh-barr-new-assault-on-access-to-coastal-areas


CLAIMS TSUNAMI HITS FORESHORE AND SEABED  (30/4/17)
Over the years, the NZCPR has taken a lead in raising concerns about the race-based demands of the tribal elite as they seek legal privilege at the expense of other New Zealanders. On many occasions we have found ourselves head to head with the Government of the day – most notably with National over law changes to the foreshore and seabed, and more recently, the Resource Management Act.

In the case of the foreshore and seabed, we opposed National’s repeal of Crown ownership back in 2011, raising concerns that the Marine and Coastal Area Act could open the floodgates to a “land grab” by iwi.

We warned that giving Maori sovereignty over large tracts of New Zealand’s coastline and Territorial Sea would expose the area to exploitation through mining and the uncontrolled taking of wildlife.

We raised concerns about extortion and corruption – through demands for royalties from commercial operators using the coast, and the vetoing of proposed developments … until suitable payments are made.

We worried that demands by iwi for the law to allow the appointment of Wardens and Fisheries Officers to patrol ‘wahi tapu’ areas – imposing fines of up to $5,000 and reporting ‘trespassers’ to the Police – signalled their intention to prohibit public access.

We were accused of scaremongering – with National even gloating about how few claims had been lodged.

WELL, ALL OF THAT HAS NOW CHANGED.

The six year window for lodging foreshore and seabed claims closed on April 3rd, with a tsunami of last minute applications pouring in – as many as 550, according to some media.......

Continue reading Dr Muriel Newman’s alarming newsletter here > http://www.nzcpr.com/claims-tsunami-hits-foreshore-and-seabed/


Will the 2011 MACA ACT now start STEALING OUR BEACHES?  (30/4/17)
An expiry date of Monday 3 April 2017 was set in the Act, for lodging all claims. That is, six years after the Act came into force. However, since 3rd April, it has led to a flood of claims being registered with the Wellington High Court, and with secret Crown Negotiation, based on claims registered with the Court by 3rd April.

This massive filing is clearly being orchestrated by the tribal elites. Justice Department staff reckon the number of last-minute claims is well over 150. These have been advertised in vast numbers in the public notices in regional and local papers. On Saturday 29thApril for instance, there were about 30 different ads in the NZ Herald, and 10 in other daily papers, including four in the Dominion-Post. These last-minute claims are seriously over-stretching the resources of the Wellington High Court.

Many of these claims overlap with other claims, as has already happened with a number of claims lodged before 3rd April. It, of course is not possible for two tribal groups to “exclusively use and occupy” the same area of coast. The claims also make expansive and sometimes laughable claims for PCRs. Almost all the coasts of NZ have been claimed two or three times over, including remote offshore island that no tribe has ever occupied.

Many tribal groups with claims under the Secret Crown Negotiation process, believe their claims will not succeed, so are swapping horses in mid-stream. Today (3 May) Maanu Paul claimed the whole of the North Island coast out to 12 nm. This highlights the level of delirium around. Likewise Ngai Tahu have claimed all the MACA over the four fifths of the South Island that is in their region.

THE HIGH COURT PROCESS ALLOWS MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC TO JOIN THESE PROCEEDINGS. HOWEVER, THERE IS NO LIMIT TO THE AMOUNT OF MONEY THAT TRIBAL GROUPS ARE GIVEN BY THE NATIONAL GOVERNMENT – OVER $13 MILLION – TO PAY LAWYERS AND OTHERS TO ARGUE THEIR CLAIMS, WHILE NON-TRIBAL PARTICIPANTS SUCH AS CORANZ HAVE TO PAY THEIR OWN WAY.

The high risk now is that claims with no public interest opponent will be prime targets for the tribal groups and their lawyers to pull the wool over judges inexperienced about this type of claim........

Read Dr Hugh Barr’s informative article here > http://www.nzcpr.com/will-the-2011-maca-act-now-start-stealing-our-beaches/#more-22140