Key undermines Treaty of Waitangi | The Jackal

11 Jul 2012

Key undermines Treaty of Waitangi

On Monday, Prime Minister John Key said that he would simply ignore the Waitangi Tribunal if it found that Maori had rights to fresh water and geothermal assets under the Treaty of Waitangi, and any decision it made was not binding on the government.

This hasn't gone down well with the Maori party. Today, TVNZ reported:

In a joint statement, Sharples and fellow co-leader Tariana Turia said they were "bitterly disappointed" by Key's comment.

"We view very seriously the comments made by the Prime Minister that "we could choose to ignore what findings they might have'. To make such comments is an insult to all of us," the co-leaders said.

"We believe that the Government is required in good faith to consider the recommendations of the Tribunal.

"We are also disappointed in what appears to be the unilateral rejection that Maori do not have ownership rights to freshwater.

"We will not tolerate any suggestion that the mana or the Tribunal can be undermined. This is a specialist body, with members appointed by the Governor-General and chosen carefully for their knowledge and expertise".

It's not the first time Key has pissed the Maori party off, and a tenuous relationship is now looking even more strained. The truth be told, Key views the Maori party as opposition anyway, and has no qualms about sticking a dagger in their backs.

Key has made a calculated decision based on the government having a one seat majority without the Maori party. It's a dangerous gamble, with the police recently forwarding documents concerning John Banks' corruption to their legal department. With him gone and no support from the Maori party, the National led government would be in ruins and a snap election would need to be called.

The question is whether the Maori party will do the right thing and split from the defunct coalition, or is their love for power all consuming?

It wouldn't be the first time the Maori party failed to do the right thing for their people, and they clearly value the crumbs from the table and money for the Maori elite above anything else. In my opinion, Pita Sharples, Te Ururoa Flavell and Tariana Turia are only interested in personal gain... typical KÅ«papa in other words.

Will that betrayal extend to helping National undermine our constitutional law and essentially the Treaty of Waitangi? I guess time will tell.