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Ed Sheeran

Whānau a Apanui rushes towards signing

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A Te Whānau a Apanui elder says the crown is trying to rush the iwi into signing an agreement in principle to settle its historic treaty claims.

Tuariki Delamere says last week negotiators were sent a 98-page settlement agreement and asked for a response within three days so Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Minister Andrew Little could come up this Friday to sign it.

He says as a former crown treaty negotiator and cabinet minister, he knows that's not how the process should work.

Iwi members need time to understand the document and go back to the crown if they are unhappy or unsure about elements of it.

"I'm angry that our negotiators and our hapū chairs have allowed themselves to be browbeaten by the crown. They're not baubles they're holding out to them, but the chairs I've met, they don't understand the agreement because it's very complex, it's a legal document, they've had no time to read it and all of sudden 'Oh my god, the minister's coming to Te Whānau a Apanui, we'll be able to revel in the spotlight of signing this bloody thing,'" Mr Delamere says.

He also wants two of the negotiators, Ngāti Porou lawyer Matanuku Mahuika and his employee Natalie Coates, removed for conflict of interest.

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