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Ed Sheeran

Broad Māori voice needed in water talks

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Crown Māori Relations Minister Kelvin Davis says the Government needs to hear from more than just iwi leaders if it is to resolve conflict over fresh water.

Mr Davis was one of a delegation of ministers who attended last week’s Iwi Chairs Forum where the call was made for nominations to Te Kāhui Wai Māori, the Māori Freshwater Forum.

He says iwi chairs made no progress in their talks on water with the previous Government.

Mr Davis says iwi activity makes up only a small part of the Māori economy, and water is critical to the wider land development strategy.

"If the current rules are continued then those people who have access to water will continue to have access to water and that means Māori land that can’t be developed because they don’t have access to water will continue to be undeveloped so we have to have these conversations and Māori across the board need to be involved and we need their advice and their guidance," he says.

Other Māori organisations have been asked for nominations including and incorporations, the Federation of Māori Authorities, and Te Ohu Kaimoana.


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