The High Court finds fault with the Waitangi Tribunal (and a breach of The Treaty) while Jackson is congratulating it

Our Beehive bulletin

While Maori Development Minister Willie Jackson was addressing members of the Waitangi Tribunal,  the High Court was setting aside a tribunal decision to return $800m in state-owned land to an iwi because it had failed to follow tikanga Māori and breached the Treaty

Good grief!

The tribunal breached “the Treaty”?

Apparently so.

According to Newsroom:

Crucially, Justice Francis Cooke declared the tribunal had been in breach of the Treaty of Waitangi and not followed tikanga when it decided lands transferred to state-owned enterprises or in Crown forests in the central North Island should be returned to the Ngāti Kahungunu iwi.

The disputed tribunal ruling on the $800m of public lands accordingly has been overturned (although the judgement may be appealed).

Jackson’s speech to the tribunal members, telling them what a splendid job they were doing and giving them an idea of the future work that lies in store for them, was posted on the Beehive website along with – Continue reading “The High Court finds fault with the Waitangi Tribunal (and a breach of The Treaty) while Jackson is congratulating it”

The PM announces a relaxation of border controls – but only Cook Islanders will be able to benefit

Our kindly PM registered her return to work as leader of the nation with yet another statement on the Beehive website, the second in two days (following her appointment of Anna Curzon to the APEC Business Advisory Council on Wednesday).

It’s great to know we don’t have to check with Twitter to learn what her government is doing and/or what she thinks about the big issues of the day.

More fascinating, her press statement – at first blush – seemed to conflict with an announcement on Tuesday from COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins.

This advised us that the Government is putting in place a new set of measures to protect New Zealand from COVID-19, including new emerging variants.

Given the high rates of infection in many countries and evidence of the global spread of more transmissible variants, it’s clear that most global air routes will be of critical concern for the foreseeable future, and we must respond strongly to the evolving situation,” said Chris Hipkins.

“New Zealand is currently in a very fortunate position with no community cases – let alone of new variant types – but we take nothing for granted.

“That’s why we continue to take action, with very specific steps to further strengthen our response at the air border.” Continue reading “The PM announces a relaxation of border controls – but only Cook Islanders will be able to benefit”

It looks like we may journey to the Cooks long before we can motor on the replacement Manawatu Gorge highway

A new Beehive press statement succinctly refers in the headline to “the Manawatū Gorge replacement highway”.   The statement proceeds to tell us the highway has been given a name as long as the highway itself.  It’s Te Ahu a Turanga: Manawatū Tararua Highway.

We imagine the signposts to accommodate that wording will chew into more than a few of the trees in the Government’s billion trees planting programme.  

Whatever it is officially called, or what motorists might prefer to call it, Transport Minister Michael Wood wants us to know the ground has been broken for Te Ahu a Turanga: Manawatū Tararua Highway – the new road that will replace the former SH3 route through the Manawatū Gorge.

This was among the latest items of news from the Beehive, which also advised us:

  • Environment Court Judge Melanie Harland and Wellington Queen’s Counsel Andru Isac have been appointed Judges of the High Court, sitting in Auckland and Wellington respectively,
  • The game development sector’s exports grew by more than 59 per cent in the year to April 2020 to reach $324 million (around 2% of the dairy sector’s annual exports of some $16 billion). The industry has reported growth of an average 43 per cent a year over the past eight years.
  • Cook Islands and New Zealand officials have been instructed to continue working together to put in place all measures required to safely recommence two-way quarantine-free travel in the first quarter of 2021. [Had there been any suggestion they should not do this?]  New Zealand will work “at pace” to implement quarantine-free access for travellers from the Cook Islands to New Zealand as a first step in a phased approach to resumption of two-way quarantine free travel between the two nations.

 Hmm.  Will travellers get to the Cooks sooner than they can drive on the new highway? Continue reading “It looks like we may journey to the Cooks long before we can motor on the replacement Manawatu Gorge highway”

Air Rarotonga’s second Saab 340B opens possibilities in the north (but NZ help would be welcome)

Here’s a project for the New Zealand  government to support – before the Chinese arrive.

Air Rarotonga has just added a second Saab 340B to its fleet and is considering flights to the northern Cooks.  However, the basic crushed coral runways at Manihiki, Penrhyn and possibly Pukapuka need upgrading.

Surely  Foreign  Affairs  Minister  Winston Peters,  with his enthusiasm  for the  Pacific, will be eager to  back the project – wouldn’t he?

Air Rarotonga, in business since 1978, says the second Saab will add capacity initially to the Rarotonga-Aitutaki route with the potential for regional charter flights to Tahiti and Niue.  The new aircraft has been the catalyst for Air Rarotonga entering discussions with government about upgrading those runways. Continue reading “Air Rarotonga’s second Saab 340B opens possibilities in the north (but NZ help would be welcome)”