Thursday December 14, 2017   Last updated 02:09AM
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Greens' Kermadec card worries TOKM

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Te Ohu Kaimoana fears the proposed Kermadec Ocean Sanctuary could be a bargaining chip in coalition negotiations.

National delayed passing the sanctuary into law after the iwi raised concerns it would confiscate development rights that were part of the Maori Fisheries settlement.

It’s still on National’s to do list, and the Greens are also pushing hard for the sanctuary.

Te Ohu Kaimoana chief executive Dion Tuuta says all political parties say they honour the Treaty of Waitangi, but struggle with allowing Maori to use their taonga as they see fit.

"If it is on the table for coalition talks then last time it was really only the Maori Party that stopped the rights bein taken. Now they are no longer there we are looking to those incoming Maori members of parliament step up and understand what is going on here and to defend Maori interests," he says.

Mr Tuuta says the idea of a no take sanctuary is marketing rather than science or good policy, and the area is already a benthic protection area where activities that disturb the seabed are banned.

DION TUUTA INTERVIEW

 

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