Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Tuhoe and Maori grievances - another perspective

In an article in The Guardian by Jon Henley, "The Maori resistance", University of Auckland sociologist and Tuhoe tribe member Dr Tracey McIntosh is quoted at length about injustices suffered by the Maori. In the article, which sets out to provide a bit of context to "colourful Tuhoe activist Tame Iti" (pictured) and "the arrest of an alleged terrorist cell", she says:
"The land issue is the legal, cultural and spiritual focus of almost all Maori grievances today. Many tribes, including mine, never even signed the treaty, so we just view our land as having been stolen. And above and beyond the Maori's spiritual relationship with their lands, you can make a very strong evidence-based argument for saying that the alienation of our land removed our whole economic base and distorted the whole range of social relationships. That's why this history is so important: for Maori, the injustices of the past have real implications for our present lives. We're still seeing their consequences.
"There has been some attempt to address the land issue, but not with any tremendous success: the Waitangi Tribunal, established in 1975 to hear complaints of alleged treaty violations, has in the 32 years of its existence registered 1,400 cases, heard around 150, issued 50 reports - and settled barely 20 claims, for a total value of just over NZ$700m."

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