AN innovative model currently being developed by Professor Whatarangi Winiata of Ngāti Raukawa looks at the detrimental effects of colonization, what needs to be done to rectify the problems and the amount the Crown should pay to settle these treaty grievances.
Professor Winiata unveiled the “new initiative” at a hui of seven Ngāti Huia hapū at Ngātokowaru Marae recently and he says it is still a work in progress.
The model is being developed by Te Hono Ki Raukawa who are supporting the hapū and iwi of Te Reureu, Ngāti Kauwhata and Ngāti Raukawa from the Manawatū and Horowhenua to prepare and present their claims to the Waitangi Tribunal.
Professor Winiata said the model attempts to understand the erosion of tino rangatiratanga by Crown action over the past 175 years. It is based on rangatiratanga which is de ned as “the iwi’s capacity or potential to express kaupapa”.
These kaupapa include loss of language, loss of land and Professor Winiata said in 1840, the hapū and iwi of Ngāti Raukawa exercised their tino rangatiratanga over all things under the water, on the land and in the air.
“We held 100 per cent of the land; had shing rights over all of the waterways in our takiwā (region); all of our people spoke te reo Raukawa 24/7; all of our tamariki were educated and imbued with mātauranga Māori; the majority of our population were resident in the takiwā.”
“Our paepae enjoyed an abundance of accomplished orators and performers of mōteatea, waiata, karakia and haka; we were able to sustain ourselves from the land, the sea and the fowl in the air; we could clothe ourselves and build our own housing; our people were employed in the wellbeing of our hapū and iwi and we were able to rally to the call of other hapū and iwi within the Confederation or further a eld as necessary. Life was good.”
Today these iwi and hapū hold perhaps three per cent of their former landholdings. Only three per cent of tamariki enjoy positive Māori education models. Less than one in six can converse in Māori; about half of the
population own their own homes compared to three out of four Pākehā.”
The model is based on a before and after assessment and what is being attempted is to measure and identify what are some of the meaningful signs that indicate the tribe’s potential to express their rangatiratanga and tino rangatiratanga.”
“This model identi es many areas of our rangatiratanga that we need to pay attention to, including the recovery of lands taken from us. We can also shape our own solutions to these issues which the Crown will need
to make provision for in terms of resourcing and their legislative arrangements.”
There is still a large amount of work to be done but Professor Winiata said they have identi ed some key areas that they need to develop major plans for; including land, education, health and wellbeing, our mātauranga and language.”
Professor Winiata hopes hapū will see some value in iwi and hapū developing their own “versions as they plan to engage with the Crown.”
The Ngāti Huia gathering received the model positively with support expressed for the work on the model to continue.
There are 16,500 people who identify as being Ngāti Raukawa (including Ngāti Kauwhata) but there are 25,000 to 35,000 people who can af liate to Ngāti Raukawa.