Tuesday, November 12, 2013

The Tongariro report

The Waitangi Tribunal has issued its report into the National Park District, finding that the crown committed serious Treaty breaches in the establishment and management of Tongariro National Park and in the Tongariro hydro power scheme. They recomend significant compensation, co-management of the national park (similar to that currently being established for Tuhoe over Te Urewera), and recognition of iwi rights over waterways. The latter could pose some serious problems for Genesis Energy, which owns the Tongariro scheme. The government says it won't, of course - but its hard to see why anyone would pay top dollar for a company where one of its significant assets could be reposessed by its original owners at any time with no compensation.

OTOH, as is clear from the Meridian giveaway, the government doesn't really care about getting top dollar for our assets; all it cares about is passing them into the hands of its donors and cronies as quickly as possible.

Still, there's some chance here that the sale will be delayed, and the threat of that could result in the iwi getting decent compensation for once.