Illegal squat­ters

The Northland Age - - Opinion -

Ana­hera Herbert-Graves re­gur­gi­tates the ‘plough­men of Par­i­haka’ (May 28).

The thrust of that mat­ter was that for 14 years these Par­i­haka peo­ple il­le­gally squat­ted on legally con­fis­cated land (re­sult of ear­lier tribal re­bel­lion). As she ad­mits, they wreaked havoc on neigh­bour­ing set­tler farms by plough­ing fields. Other recorded in­ci­dences in­volved steal­ing horses, the pulling down of a newly built stock­yard, plac­ing a toll on pass­ing trav­ellers and ha­rass­ing store­keep­ers.

This den of ‘paci­fists’ also har­boured fugi­tives from the law, kept com­pany with rebel Hau Haus, and were found to have a stock­pile of 250 firearms and am­mu­ni­tion.

Later she touches on Bas­tion Point. Records show that most of Auck­land was sold by the tribes ex­cept for 5.3ha at Bas­tion Point, which was taken un­der the Pub­lic Works Act for mil­i­tary use in 1886; £1500 was paid in com­pen­sa­tion.

In to­day’s money, £1500 equals ap­prox­i­mately $282,000. The me­dian price per hectare of New Zealand farm­land in April 2015 was $28,668. This means govern­ment com­pen­sa­tion in 1886 was ap­prox­i­mately dou­ble the per hectare value of Bas­tion Point land. Ngati Whatua was more than ad­e­quately com­pen­sated for Bas­tion Point in 1886.

In her ar­ti­cle she quotes that “. . . the protest and eviction led to the es­tab­lish­ment of the Wai­tangi Tri­bunal

. . .” The facts are that the Wai­tangi Tri­bunal was es­tab­lished in 1975 and the Bas­tion Point eviction was ap­prox­i­mately three years later, in 1978. Fur­ther, Whina Cooper’s land march ar­rived at Par­lia­ment three days af­ter the Treaty of Wai­tangi Act 1975 was passed.

Need I say more? GE­OFF PARKER


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