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Dr Muriel Newman


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Fishhook ad

National’s Ad – click to read the text

The water debate is heating up, with orchestrated attacks on water bottling companies. Maori leaders want a price on water. With the resource estimated to be worth $35 billion a year, they know that once National give them control of fresh water, they will be able to claim royalty payments for future use and compensation for lost revenue.

As the Maori Council chair Maanu Paul said on Tuesday, “Any commercial operation will have to pay a fee, and that is the issue as far as the council is concerned – because these people are profiting from the use of a common good that belongs to Maori.”

Previous governments have rejected such opportunistic claims by Maori leaders. But in an astonishing act of hypocrisy, the National Party MP, who is advancing the current attempt by Maori to control fresh water, led the campaign against their attempt to control the foreshore and seabed.

While Nick Smith is now turning a blind eye to New Zealanders’ concerns over Maori control of water, in 2003 he stood up for the public. During a protest march down the main street of his Nelson electorate, he said, “Ordinary New Zealanders, who have shown a huge degree of tolerance to treaty claims and spending on Maori issues, have had enough.”

Dr Smith claimed that while senior Labour Government ministers were negotiating with Maori over the ownership of the foreshore and seabed to find a “win-win” solution, the answer was “very simple”: “The Government should pass legislation confirming the Crown as owner on behalf of all New Zealanders. Anyone who wants to divide up the shoreline for one exclusive group of citizenship must be stopped”.

In 2004, the National Party published a newspaper advertisement opposing the Government’s bill to give Maori control of the foreshore and seabed, calling on the public to send in submissions.

Their ad criticised the Government for giving Maori special rights: “Labour’s basic message to Kiwis is: if you’re not Maori, then no matter how long you live here, you can never love this land as deeply – or care for it as responsibly – as Maori. Provisions like these will disempower your family forever…

National opposed Labour’s plan to give Maori ‘the power of veto’ over resource consent applications: “You know what that means. You want to build a boat ramp. But the local iwi says ‘Not so fast. Your ramp will have a significant adverse effect on our customary rights’. You then have two choices. A court case (bound to be long and expensive). Or a bribe (merely expensive). You pay the koha. Nothing’s changed. New name, same old scam.”

The ad opposed Maori being given ‘joint management’ rights, saying the new law would “give Maori strengthened ability to participate in decision-making processes. Strengthened ability? That means only one thing. Joint management.

They complained that Maori claims to the foreshore and seabed would be ‘hard to oppose’: “The Government has created a situation where these orders will be rubber-stamped by the Maori Land Court – a judicial jack-up. Say an iwi applies for an order. You can bet no-one will object. Why? Because they won’t even know about it… No hearing. No debate. No comeback.

National warned that under Labour’s new bill, “The koha racket will continue. Part-Maori descendents of signatories to the Treaty of Waitangi will still be able to hold up any development … until their terms are met. There’s only one word for that. Extortion.

And they claimed the new law was divisive: “This legislation will divide our country, not bring it together. This is not the way to build a better future for all of us. National says the foreshore and seabed is Kiwi property. Not iwi property.”

National’s present position, as outlined in Dr Smith’s consultation document on fresh water reform, reeks of double standards.

Maori tribes will be given joint management rights and the power of veto over councils – the very things National objected to in Labour’s foreshore and seabed legislation.

Their plan to pass the responsibility for rubber stamping iwi claims to fresh water onto local authorities, will make such deals hard to oppose – again something National complained about in their ‘fish hook’ ad.

And with multiple tribal groups involved in the control of freshwater in any catchment, iwi consultation and the whole koha racket will skyrocket.

Back in 2003, with local authorities spending $3.4 million a year consulting with iwi, and the Corrections Department alone spending $2.2 million consulting iwi over three new prisons, National spoke out strongly against the rising cost of iwi consultation.

Nick Smith also objected to the inclusion of Maori spiritualism in the RMA: “It is political correctness gone mad when key decisions on infrastructure are made on the basis that… it will adversely affect Maori spiritual beliefs and self-esteem. This decision is an invitation for backhanders…”

He said, “There can be no certainty of property rights when the fantasy world of Hollywood starts being given credibility by our courts. This example follows previous rulings by the Environment Court about diverted waters adversely affecting Maori self esteem, and motorways and prisons being diverted or held up over taniwha. It shows just how politically correct and stupid the Resource Management Act has become and highlights the desperate need for reform.”

He made a promise: “National is committed to a thorough cleanup of the Resource Management Act to remove any references to the spiritual world. This sort of hocus pocus has no place in the courtroom.”

After eight years in government, not only has the “hocus pocus” not been cleaned up, but Dr Smith is about to make it a whole lot worse. Through sweeping co-governance rights and the power of veto over democratically elected local authorities, the radical Iwi Participation Agreements proposed for the RMA will condemn councils into endless consultation with multiple tribal groups.

The result will be more and more abandoned projects as property owners decide it’s not worth the hassle.

Bob Jones explained what it was like consulting with iwi in 2014, when he wanted to restore a window in a commercial building in central Auckland that had been removed by a tenant. Since the building was within 50 metres of one of thousands of new designated Maori heritage sites introduced by the Auckland Council’s Maori Statutory Board, under the Draft Unitary Plan, it needed a resource consent. To gain that consent, Sir Bob had to seek the approval of 13 iwi, ranging from Taranaki to Whangarei. Letters were duly written.

Sir Bob explains: “Five replied stating they had no concerns while others said they were considering the matter, presumably calling huis to weigh up this window crisis. One respondent bearing that fine old Maori name of Jeff Lee, representing something called Ngai Tai Ki Tamaki, contacted the planner… After advising the planners verbally that no Cultural Impact Assessment Report was required for the window, he nevertheless asked them to consider it – brace yourselves – given his ancestors, centuries ago, gathered in the vicinity. Lee then wrote, outlining his terms for ‘assessing the window’s cultural impact’ which, he said, would take him ‘a total of six to eight hours’. For this he sought $90 per hour plus GST and ‘travel expenses of 0.77c per km’.”

Unsurprisingly, Mr Lee was told to “get stuffed”.

Treaty Settlement Acts are now littered with requirements to involve iwi in decision-making. Anyone wanting resource consents in the vast number of areas where statutory acknowledgements exist must consult all iwi individually – with each no doubt charging substantial fees for their pro-forma cultural assessments.

In fact, stories of RMA rorts are everywhere – and National knows it has become legalised corruption. But rather than taking a principled approach and removing race-based requirements from the law – to create a much-needed level playing field – they clearly intend making the problem a whole lot worse.

Further, instead of fulfilling his promise to take spiritualism out of the RMA, Nick Smith embedded it, through “Te Mana o te Wai”, in the 2014 National Policy Statement on Fresh Water.

Dr Smith should know only too well how inappropriate it is to include cultural spiritualism in water quality controls – but such is his hypocrisy that he intends strengthening the concept in the forthcoming reforms: “When Te Mana o te Wai is given effect, the water body will sustain the full range of environmental, social, cultural and economic values held by iwi and the community.”

In his fresh water consultation document, Dr Smith proposes “to require regional councils, when setting freshwater objectives, to identify the values of the iwi and hapu that have associations with those freshwater bodies. Hand-in-hand with recognition of their association with water bodies, there needs to be ways for iwi and hapu to participate in decision-making about those water bodies. This decision making occurs through development of regional policy statements, regional plans, catchment plans, and consenting.”

His approach will result in Maori tribes controlling waterways throughout New Zealand, clipping the ticket whenever anyone applies for consents – and, if a price is put on water, pocketing a royalty every time a tap is turned on.

The Northland Regional Council has spoken out against plans to give Maori authority over “freshwater bylaws, consents and other statutory responsibilities”. They are adamant that decision-making is the job of elected councillors. Chairman Bill Shepherd also explained how “the government’s use of the word ‘iwi’ in consultation documents was problematic for Northland, where the landowners were primarily hapu – and there were 190 of them.”

Imagine having to negotiate with 190 tribal groups every time you want to make a decision! National’s approach highlights the absolute hypocrisy of the claims by Minister Nick Smith, that their RMA reforms will bring consistency into local government.

This week’s NZCPR Guest Commentator, former Judge and law lecturer Anthony Willy, has been examining the powerful forces behind the fresh water reforms:

“Nick Smith the Minister responsible for the government’s fresh water policy said at a recent public meeting in Auckland called to discuss the matter, ‘There would be an obligation on local councils to consult with iwi about the use of water in which they might have a special interest, but there was to be no suggestion of co-governance…’

Anthony refutes these claims, quoting from “a memorandum filed by the government’s lawyers in the Waitangi Tribunal Registry should there be a need for a resumed hearing”. The document confirms that the Crown worked closely with Iwi Leaders throughout 2015, developing fresh water policy proposals “to be included in the public consultation process”. It states their priority for 2016 will be “Economic Development”. They intend “developing a range of mechanisms to enable iwi/hapu to access fresh water in order to realise and express their economic interests”.

He concludes, “This puts it beyond doubt that the government is open to discussing both co governance with the Iwi Leaders Group and the allocation of fresh water to persons of Maori blood on a race basis.”

What this means, is that once National gives iwi control of fresh water, they intend to develop mechanisms to generate economic returns. As sure as night follows day, there will be an iwi levy on water.

If you haven’t put in a submission opposing all race-based proposals for fresh water reform, then please do so as numbers really matter on issues like this. A simple email to watersubmissions@mfe.govt.nz stating your position is all that is needed. And why not send it on to all National MPs (their addresses are HERE), as they are the ones who are responsible for these dreadful proposals, and they really need to hear what the public thinks.

If you believe that other New Zealanders should be informed about what’s going on, so they too can send in submissions and contact MPs, then please support our ad HERE. It’s not too late. The ads will start running this weekend – and if we have enough support, next weekend as well.


Should National abandon their proposals for iwi control of fresh water?

Vote x 120

*Poll comments are posted below.


*All NZCPR poll results can be seen in the Archive.

Click to view x 120


John Key is sucking up to Maori for the expediency of his popularity. He has no principles and it seems he will bring in laws to suit himself. I don’t think he gives a rats backside about the citizens he purports to support. He is a racist and supports racist divisive policies. Don
Water is precious and is for everyone. Alec
Yes definitely. John
I do not trust that iwi/hapu will put water quality above economic exploitationon behalf of Maori. Rochelle
Bloody stupidity. National wake up & realise you would govern alone if you demonstrated to the NZ electorate that you have the balls to say NO, NO, and NO again. David
Fresh water is a right for every New Zealander and it does not matter what colour,or nationality you are.. Fresh water and salt water was here well before any Maori canoe landed on our shores.Yes wrongs were done but they were done on both sides not just the white mans side. They attacked and ate there fellow Iwis to get control of the land. David
If national go ahead with this I will never vote for them again and many of my friends are of the same view. Margaret
Maori claims for all manner of things are out of hand and utterly ridiculous. It is time to put a stop to Maori claims which have already split New Zealand. Peter
Water belongs to EVERYONE – not just maori. Tina
This is scaremongering based on a very ignorant and colonized view of NZ politics, check your privilege yo. Renee
What on earth are they thinking? Mark
This is the most stupid proposal that any NZ Government has ever proposed. Such Iwi ‘rights’ etc will divide and weaken our beautiful country, and doubtless lead to eventual civil strife – all based on race. John Key – do you want to be known as the PM who caused ‘civil war’ in New Zealand? Carl
Water belongs to all New Zealanders !! Terry
This is disgusting and it may be time to leave national if this is how they intend to sell us all down the river – excuse the pun!!. roger
We need a ‘Trump experience’ here so at least the media might expose the political correctness of all things Maori and the public to have a debate on all the hocus pocus associated with this racial division. Monica
Water belongs to all of us and to have any ethnic group having a priority say will lead to huge problems in the future.Separatism needs to stop NOW. Shirley
Why should any citizen have two votes when I have only one? Winston
Should never have been considered. Jim
National behaves fraudulently with their sneaky support of racial discrimination. All NZ citizens have equal rights. Geoff Palmer and other idiots may try to rewrite the TOW but most New Zealanders know it didn’t include sovereignty, partnership, co-management and other nonsensical entitlements based on a trace of real or imagined DNA. John
No fair, National. Need to seriously address the hypocrisy here. AJ
Definitely abandon this proposal. National are creating a culture of entitlement to Maori, and turning their back on all of NZ. One people, one nation – Dame Whina Cooper Steve
Maori don’t own the sun, water wind planets etc.This is just another way to get money. Bob
The water belong to all New Zealanders. Mike
My Family and I left NZ because of Helen Clark’s growing apartheid policies. I was considering returning. Now it looks like John Key is no better. There must be no Race-Based legislation in a free society. Elliot
Water should belong to everyone. Diane
New Zealand does not need this type of legislation, however well intended it is. It can only further the divisions that already exist…therefore, I can no longer support this Government with my vote as I feel they have completely betrayed the trust of the nation. Brian
Elementry. Iwi must not have any specific rights in the control of our water. Just a small input will lead eventually to complete control. Then we might as well all move out. Albie
Enough, enough. Greedy hands again. Ann
If this goes ahead, I will no longer support National. Just who can we trust in this country? Key is only thinking of getting Maori votes. Just WHEN are we going to see an absolute end to this Maori gravy train? Cheryl
No one owns the water. David
The Government &/or the local authority should alone be responsible, have control of all fresh water. Alan
No apartheid for New Zealand. Jack
Sack Nick Smith Peter
An agency of central government and its regional branches should be the sole managers of water & waters. Doug
Absolutely. The bullyboys/activists don’t even have to be voted in as politicians as they are winning hands down because no elected political party is game enough to take them on. I feel sorry for the younger generation – they will never stop paying. Fiona
One people, yeah right ! Lindsay
NZCPR gives succinct and credible reasoning for this proposal to be abandoned. Beverley
No one owns fresh water. Councils should have the sole right to allocate the fresh water resource in their jurisdiction. Richard
What the heck has happenned to New Zealand. Have all these politicians gone completely bonkers. Time to call a halt to ALL racist policies. Michael
Slowly but surely my grandchildren’s future is being racially given away purely for political expediency. Phil
As a New Zealander where is my Irish God given water rights, oops that’s right we don’t have a government who is willing to govern fairly to all NZers. Kelvin
This is something we AL use regardless of race. It’s about time the government stopped the racist division it I’d cresting. Nadine
Without a doubt! Unreservedly. I can’ think of anything worse than Iwi having control of water rights. It’s not theirs, its all New Zealanders. We should not be pushing for segregation. Its appalling. Kerin
Another opportunity for Maori to screw more cash out of us without even deserving to do so. John
It’s a shocker really. Andrew
Race based. Brian
Thank you CPR Ken
Nz water belongs to new zealand just like new zealand belongs to all citizens not one group who claim to be the ‘owners’ no person, tribe, family, government or anyone own a country or it’s resources. It belongs to the people. Patricia
Emphatically! Andrew
Water belongs to everyone. It is God given to all and does not accept bribes. Deborah
Yes– they should but they will not do this.I have written a submission re the Fresh Water Reform Bill and a few days later we hear on the radio that the time given to MP’s to assess these submissions has been reduced to 5(FIVE) days instead of 30 days.Their excuse was : The MP’s have to work a bit harder to do the job!!!! This is how this Govt is operating now. They become more and more insolent and arrogant in how they treat their voters.A taste of what is to come once these Tribal leaders are in charge.So folks—– brace yourselfes!!!!The deterioration of democracy in this country is already accelerating at an unprecedented pace.The only explanation left to me is that certain number of politicians in charge have been promised benefits ( material and otherwise) by Tribal leaders to advance their course. I cannot imagine that somebody in the Beehive would be so naive to let all that happen in the name of so called political correctness.This does not exist anyway. The very word correctness means that everybody is treated and considered on an equal basis and action is taken accordingly.The only way out of this mess is to have political representation for the rest of us ( 86%) which has to counter these developments decisively.And this cannot be done by the established parties. ( Except maybe NZ First— but I am not too sure about that one either)The other parties are totally undermined and utterly useless to do what they should do in the first place : protecting democracy!!! Michael
Water and air are our basic needs to live supplied free and must always be for our future as a fete nation. Claudio
The Maori are criminals in that they stole the country from the Maoriori’s and then engaged in selling this stolen property.This iacriminall act and nullifies the Treaty aals! Theodorus
I’m so sick of Our governments which both seem to love Maoris and keep giving them extra advantages over every other race in New Zealand. When will their racism stop and they become democratic again treating us all as equals? Eric
YES and also abandon all other iwi schemes for control of anything,nz is becoming the land of the long brown cloud, god? forbid. James
There is no place for racism in a New Zealand government. Bruce
Most definitely!! Bruce
Of course they should abandon this line as this is racist activity designed to split the country. Kristene
Most definitely yes. This is another attempt by the Maori gravy train to havein place regulations that will line their own pockets. Yet another appeasement attempt by National. Ron
Racism. Peter
The Government should control such resources for ALL the people. No one group of people should have more say than the rest. No one owns fresh water, the sea, the airwaves. They are there for ALL. Sue
If they don’t, it will cost them one hell of a lot of votes, the vast majority of N Zs are totally against giving control to maori. Graeme
Fresh water belongs to all people of the land, not one particular group who would stand to make a profit from an essential requirement for everyday life. This is so morally wrong. Christine
A divisive and intellectually bankrupt move on the parts of both the National government and a small number of Maori money grubbers. Delia
Water belongs to all New Zealanders. If you use the water for a profit then you should pay for it as it is a resource like any other. This includes bottled water and farming. Glenys
How can they? When National have signed the Declaration of Indigenous Rights, which confirms Maori as owners of New Zealand! To do so, especially with Helen Clark being backed by Mr. Key for the CEO position at the United Nations. This would ensure defeat not only of Helen Clark, but of National at the next election. Plus any chance of our retired and redundant politicians obtaining lucrative positions at the United Nations. Another factor which is clear is that to continue to govern National must have the Maori Party vote; and for that they must pay a %u201CDane Geld%u201D and that is getting larger by the day. In agreeing to the Maori Party as a partner to be able to govern; National has released the Tiger from the cage. Asian saying ‘If the Tiger comes to your village and you give him a bone, the next day it will be two bones, and on the third day he will eat you!’. Brian
The evidence of National’s about face on the issue of giving maori special right over water is simple enough proof that one can’t trusty a national government. And that MMP always leads to the squeaky wheel seeking a cut on all the oil( Water). Lets get rid of MMP so that we have governments’ of leadership rather than compromise. John
By the time I had finished reading the Newsletter – I felt sick that this proposal has even come this far…. How can any of us feel good about living in OUR country if this should come to pass. … Nick Smith and cohorts need a bomb under them !!! plus the Brown-bros who are the real stirrers !! Elayne
Most definitely. Winifred
Water is a gift of nature, it falls from the sky; that natural process existed before the first humans set foot in New Zealand. Water belongs to all New Zealanders Thomas
Nobody owns the water. Maori claims are all about money. If these claims are successful water users will pay and pay dearly. The National Government must stand firm and say NO. Natalie
Fresh water belongs to all New Zealanders. David
Maori iwi throughout our land have “clubed” their way across one another with only verbal boundaries to describe continuously changing locations of temporary settlement. Maori previous ownership of freshwater never existed. Maori can continue to share this evolving resource with all New Zealanders and pay their fair shars of infrastructure. Jim
Enough poxy MOARI RACIST AVARICE. Water falls out of the sky; we call it “rain”; if these silly savages can’t get their iti-brains around that then stiff biscuits. If they don’t like it they can all hop right back into their seven canoes and paddle away…good riddance. Mark
The whole thing is becoming a disgrace. Nick Smith needs replacing. Ian
Water is a human right that no one has ownership over, ever. When it come’s to water no one should profit except to ensure citizens get access to it in a clean form and delivered in the most accessible and cost effective manner. Water recognises no religion, race, tribes or customary rights of one human over any other human. There is to be no difference to access whether to the wealthy or most destitute, ever. Tony
The orchestrated veneration of our ‘founding document’ has gone far enough. Scrap the divisive Treaty. Davuid
Does this mean that when i want to pump water from a pond on our property in order to irrigate our tress, I will need to pay the Moaris? This is so wrong! John
It’s all about money and power. Both for the Government and IWI. National you have lost my vote and also my respect. Ross
What next, the air? Bruce
No one owns the water, ever. Graham
Maoris have no exclusive right over others for the 5 following reasons. 1. Queen Victoria was a figurehead same as our present Queen, she did not have the right nor the power to grant Maoris any exclusive right unaivable to her own British citizens. 2. Go to www.treatyofwaitangi.net.nz and you will find hard evidence from around the world the above is correct. No MP, Govt historian nor any other has been able to disprove the above with hard evidence. 3. The treaty was ratified by the borders of New South Wales being extended to encompass “all of the islands of new Zealand”, causing us to be ruled by immediately by non-racial English law. 4. Queen Victoria’s Royal Charter of 16-11-1840, ratified on 03-05-1841, split us from New South Wales, gave us our first constitution, English law only and own Courts to administer English law only. 5. The “Law of Nature” is contained within English law, quote:- “By the Law of Nature things are common to mankind – the air, running water, the sea and consequently the shores of the sea”. Emperor Justinian, 500 AD. The Law of Nature has existed since Roman times, and was first articulated in the laws of Emperor Justinian 1500 years ago. In its early form, the idea of the public trust sought to protect the public%u2019s rights to access certain resources, particularly navigable bodies of water. Public uses of water resources were to be protected by the state, which, as a trustee, could not grant exclusive rights to any single individual or entity. Giving ownership or rights to an individual would infringe on the publics right to access and use the resources. The Law of Nature was inherited by England’s legal system, and emerged in 1215 as part of the Magna Carta. George
If Government gave me control of fresh water I would want to make a buck from it – it is human nature – giving Maori control of fresh water is an open invitation to tax it and make life even sweeter for the iwi elite who are the main beneficiaries of the billions of dollars already given to them. It is just a nutty proposal! Brian
No one person, or group, OWNS water. The Govts task is to ADMINISTER that even-handedly with NO reference to Race. Lionel
Definite YES. Bryan
Just filed a submission, Don’t think it will do much good. It is astonishing how Key, and this National government have betrayed their voters. At least Helen Clark told Maori to jump of a cliff on a regular basis. She had bigger balls then John Key will ever have. H
As the only control on alienation of nz resources is the treaty of waitangi the shared management and use of regional resources is best utilised by the members of those regions. Iwi, hap%u016B and communites involved in the shared “ownership” of resources to achieve sustainable use and care for land and water. You make the assumption that ownership and stewardship of water is being offered to m%u0101ori – when it has never been extinguished with their free and informed consent. I think you fear that m%u0101ori may treat non-m%u0101ori as they themselves been treated since 1840 with policies of exclusion and oppression. Tik%u0101nga, which is the supreme law of this country, insists on the sharing of abundance – a fact often overlooked by those who so willingly express their “informed opinion”. I fail to see the difference between power companies earning revenue from a common pool resource and m%u0101ori doing the same. The racial division you attempt to create is doomed to fail as the citizens of this young country become better informed of corporate greed and historical injustice. Dion
YES YES Another huge scam!!!! Ron
Quite wrong. Jane
And stop all “Apartheid moves “NOW. Gus
Kiwi owned not Iwi. Dennis
Maori should have no special rights than any other Kiwi. One Law for all with equal rights for all. Don
This would be the thin end of the wedge if iwi gained control of fresh or any water. No way must it be allowed to happen. Myles
It’s time the Waitangi travesty was put into history and the I Want Its (IWIs) told to get to work and earn their keep. This treaty b…S… has had more than it’s day costing the tax payers billions of $ for no economic returns to the country. PETER
Water should belong to the crown, for the use of all New Zealanders equally. Kabe
This is total madness! Steadily creating a Them and Us division in our country. Hugh
I will not be voting National again. Alastair
Definitely YES! Abandon the proposals for iwi water control and every New Zealander should read the book, ONE TREATY, ONE NATION a.s..a.p. and act to make more people aware. If we don’t then we deserve everything that is coming to us. Don
Fresh water is not owned by any culture. It is God given for all, equally. Sarah
They are institutionalised racism. The ongoing impact will be further division between people groups. Amazing is the deafening silence from the Race Relations Conciliator. Malcolm
Water belongs to all of us regardless of ethnicity. Roy
It seems common sense is no longer the yardstick! Don
National MUST cancel ALL the need for a maori automatic siting on councils etc. All maori need to get on with NORMAL life,get a job and work for a living NOT live of the backs of us White folks. William
These proposals must be stopped. Bryan
Water belongs to no one – it is part of the land we live in and no one body should be allowed to control it. By giving iwi control will cause more racism in New Zealand. We need to all be New Zealanders – ONE PEOPLE OF NEW ZEALAND. We cannot keep paying for things which happened 150 years ago. Peace and Harmony. Daphne
“All animals are created equal. But some are more equal than others” George Orwell, in Animal Farm. Lesley
Absolutely! The National Government must not sell us down the RIVER… Water in New Zealand belongs to all NEW ZEALANDERS. Constance
Scrap it now..!! Peter
Race based laws have no place in our democracy. David
Please take race out of politics. Laurie
Absolutely! The Government should get on with representing ALL New Zealanders, not just a racist faction. Stop wasting time on this issue, or go to the country on it, I say. Ievan
How dare any Political Party &/or NZ Govt give away our God given right of Fresh Water to a minority group like Maori (15% of Population of NZ) or anyone that is precious to all New Zealanders. Robin
It is just one more racial division in the country on the road to apartheid and ever growing corruption. Frank
The potential demise of National is looming with their craziness in this and other glaring policy directions. Chris
This must the worst government in all our history. When will National show some guts and keep one promise at least. that no one owns the water? Why is National allowing less than 5% of the population to rule the other 95% through lies and deceit? Maori are NOT the indigenous people here and everyone knows it. John Key will have a legacy alright, He will go down in history as the prime minister responsible for the total demise of democracy in this nation. KEEP YOUR PROMISE AND TELL NICK SMITH TO STOP hinting Maori have rights to our water. Cecelia
Will we ever become all New Zealanders one race of fellow citizens. ? Bruce
Water is the b all and end all of life for all and everything no one entity should own it. But all should respect it and the use of it. Laurel
This preferential treatment of Maori needs to come to an end. We are ALL New Zealanders. John
I was at the Auckland meeting. I wish I had known about Dr Smiths earlier statements at the time. Most of the question time was around the IWI provisions but there was no way the self described “pragmatic” Dr Smith was going to listen to the concerns raised. Graeme
Unbelievable what a turncoat Nick Smith has become. How can he assume the right to make such arbitrary decisions affecting all New Zealanders? Arthur
Water belongs to all NZers not controlled by Maori. Councils should not have to have representation by iwi on council matters especially with regards to water. Andrew
It should never have gotten this far in the first place! Helen
Of course it should, but has it the intestinal fortitude to do so. Mabel
Absolutely and Immediately! What is wrong with the stupid idiots? Jim
I know what happened when IWI were given a say in the environment by Helen Clark in the Waikato. You cannot even put up a garden shed without paying Iwi first. Pat
Surely WE are getting sick of saying the same thing about the maori, we keep saying this is supposed to be a country of New Zealanders, not them and us. I think that all of us are getting pretty fed up with this rubbish! William
This clearly racist policy that national is promoting will destroy our democracy and divide our nation. We need to erase ALL race-based legislation, nationally and locally. Joyce
Yes abandon it. Neil
Of course they should. Then get rid of the treaty. What ever happened to “We are all one people”? Steve
I agree with everything that has been written on this site as to the preposterous situation we are being driven into by National’s decision to force this nonsense and accede to Maori claptrap. Robyn
Enough of this absolute nonsense. David
Yes, the fresh water belongs to all NZlders regardless of race. National should show some courage for a change to stand up against any water claim from any minority racial group, or else we will wake up one day to a deeply resentfull and divided nation! David
YES. Racism is bad and the proposed legislation is racist in the extreme. Peter
It is disastrous that the National Government is being dictated to by the Maori Party. Dr. Brash has stated his alarm at the way the National Government is bowing to the Maori’s will. Winston Peters is vowing to try to remove the RMA changes planned by the Government. He is also likely to gather large support from disenchanted National voters. This could be disastrous for National’s prospects in the election and yet the National MPs cannot see the ominous signs. All local body councillors must be elected ie no Maoris appointed. References to Maoris making decisions on RMA matters must be removed. All this has been made possible by the MMP voting system where minorities can hold the whole country to ransom. Chris
No one should ‘own’ water, or have control over anothe’rs rights. That would make iwi ‘more equal’ and the consultation fees would cripple any applicants. Dick
Unelected Maori have no place on City Councils, and water belongs to all New Zealanders. Also no one should be able to sell our water overseas without cost , when irrigation for crops has to be payed for. Wars will be fought over water in the future , it is a very precious commodity. Colleen
Submission sent. Though I know that the government intends to totally disregard the wishes of the citizens ofNew Zealand as they are only interested in trying to hold on to power. Do we have a democracy or a corrupt dictatorship? John
Hell yes. Water belongs to all. Richard
Another dangerous racist position this stupid National government is considering. Trevor
Leave the water alone. Ray
They should never suggested it in the first place.. Political suicide in the making. I would like to see another political say they would repeal the decision if it were made. Dennis
There should be no such thing as user pays for essential services such as domestic water, roads, boat ramps, parking, ambulances doctors, hospitals, fire services etc. Land owners could be paid for water used for commercial resale. K
If you want an example of “a no brainer” this is it. John
We are one people. We do not need this further division, on race lines. Ross
If they don’t I as a National Party voter since 1962, will move my vote to New Zealand First. Dave
Totally Nuts. Traiterous to the vast majority of Kiwi’s. I strongly suspect that the rebellion though simmering quietly now will become very evident at the next elections. The cost of course will also be applied to our power accounts if not all ready happening . One way or the other Maori will continue to get in the way and milk it to the absolute max. Don
Of course they should. Iwi may be important to some in New Zealand, but then all New Zealanders see that they are important as well and have more or less the same importance as any tribal group. Neil
Unelected representation for Freshwater, to be paid for by the rate payer is undemocratic and management based on race. Nick Smiths proposals should be seen as a treasonable act. Maureen
The govt. should be eliminating racism, not inciting it. John
Those who control the water supply control a whole country. Water is the source of life and we cannot survive without it. Jill
If the Govt doesn’t abandon ideas about iwi control of fresh water, there will be a major shift change within NZ. The line will have been crossed. Bruce
It sounds like “Dick” Smith, not Nick Smith. Ian
I think it is a disgrace. National have lost 5 votes from our family, if it goes ahead.. Donald
All of the people supporting this proposal /bill for Maori control and ownership of all of New Zealands fresh water should be absolutely ashamed of themselves. The National Party is a total disappointment on this issue amongst others. A message to John Key: wake up and see what damage you and your colleagues are doing to this country. Quite frankly I have had enough of one eyed politicians and Maori leaders and racial activists. Mike
Arnt we sick of nationals hypocrisy, when is enough enough? Shane
It’s high time this nonsense was stopped for good. The sooner we get a government with integrity the better – or is that an oxymoron? Alan
If Iwi were to “own” fresh water, does that mean they will be responsible for any damage done when fresh water falls from the sky? I would believe that you cannot own a resourse like fresh water – no-one owns it, can control it – or limit its supply. Leslie
What politicians will do to win votes!! This is criminal and all NZ’s should be ready to let the National party know in no uncertain terms that this is wrong! Tony
Hypocritical National have lost their direction and moral compass. Tom
Water originates from the sky, and not just over NZ but from Trade Winds from other areas outside NZ territory. Garry
Its about time the Government & political parties told the money / power grabbing Maori activists where to go & that NZ is for all of its people & not a select minority! David
Water is for ev erybody in New Zealand, not just one group, as will happen (free or not) if that one group has control. Some maori have already taken over foreshore and camp grounds, charging, sometimes with almost menaces, for what is legally “free”. Sheila
Yes Yes YES. John
No more pandering to Maori. This is very divisive. David
Yes, they must abandon this proposal to allow a Maori rort (gravy train cargo) and further it should remain with Central Govt, and certainly not farmed out to local councils which contain un-elected Maori/ M. Advisory Councils. Apart from being un-elected, but well paid they should have no business (literally) with fresh water in NZ! Frank
If National continue with this race based proposal regarding fresh water (the common good !), the will be out of office entirely at the next general election. William
Water belongs to the community it does not belong to Maori or any other group in our community. Ken
Another back peddling by National, it seems they wont be happy until Maori control everything. What happened to their previous stance? I would like to put it a bit stronger but manners prevent it. I am really unhappy with National turning their backs on all of their previous statements. Fraser
Bad enough dealing with a council so having to deal with a corrupt native mob in bed with the two faced mp makes me want to shift to Australia. Richard
We are moving to an apartheid system where 1 race has more rights because of its colour. and all other NZers are second class citizens having to pay race taxes. Robert
This whole circus should have never come up in the first place disappointed in the Govt for even considering the Maori thing in the first place nobody owns water which is a natural resource. Russell
For a party that went to the hustings with a pledge to foster unity and rid the country of racially based parliamentary seats, their current position is 180 degrees from their stated intentions three sessions ago, and as far as I am concerned, treasonous! Oh where are all the protesters that charged the barricades to show their opposition to apartheid. At the very least they should be writing a few letters to protest special consideration being given to one group of people claiming maori ancestory! My problem is now – Who can I vote for? Michael
Water is a global resource, nobody should own or control it except for the people i.e. local and national governments. Doug
NO! and we are fast approaching the breaking point to civil disobedience over this misguided, corrupt and despicable racism in our country. The tiniest smidgeon of “maori” ancestry in any New Zealander qualifies for privileged participation in this apartheid. Gordon
Outright lunacy and PC gone totally mad! MEL
This is getting absolutely ridiculous. Juliet
Of course one race of people should not have rights over our water, it’s completely ridiculous. We appear to be living in a lunatic asylum. Liz
It’s a no brainer! Maddi
If we make a change, it should be for the benefit of now and the future, not for the past. Blair
Yes, the sooner the better. In pandering to this racist rort National is selling the country down the river; especially the four fifths of us who are not maori. Robin
If Mr Smith goes ahead with this rubbish count me out for my vote next time. Leslie
Do you really need to ask? Beryl
It is part of the overall protection racket being worked by some part-Maori. Don
Just divisive actions. Simon
Water should not belong to any one entity but remain in the ownership of every New Zealander. Nelson
This is a clear case of preferring one section of the community over another. we are all one people (Treaty of Waitangi). Peter
This should never have been a consideration by any government if it was their intention to reunite all new Zealanders as ONE PEOPLE. The result of Nick Smiths proposed legislation is lunacy. It is not the action of a thinking, stable or rational individual let alone one elected to high office to uphold democracy and the will of the people. In my view it si the road to anarchy. John
Or do they need another $26million referendum to tell them what to do? Brian
If National goes ahead with this outrageously undemocratic proposal, they will surely pay the price at the next election. Unfortunately, that will probably be too late for the damage to be unscrambled! In the meantime, as I see it, there’s only one politician out there that can save New Zealand from going down this tragic and racially divisive path – Winston Peters. He’s the only one currently talking sense on this issue. I just hope that he can get through to the incredibly oblivious National MPs who seem to have completely lost touch with reality and the principles of democracy!! Les
Absolutely !! Ken
Unacceptable. Lawrie
Absolutely. Its stupid and ill-conceived initiative in the proposed iwi management of fresh water should never have seen the light of day. Geoffrey
Surely the national party are aware of your concerns and those of your readers. If not then they will hand power over to new NZ party that rejects racism. Allan
There’s no legal ground for ownership of water. Rowan
Water is the property of all New Zealanders and should stay that way. Richard
The nats should lose the next election if they go ahead with this. Not one of the wallies has cojones to call an election based on abolition of the maori seats and equality under the law. They would romp in if they did this. Mike
Enough of this separatist and divisive claptrap!! National pledge that no-one will own our freshwater, but what part-Maori radicals are seeking is the profitable CONTROL of this resource. Tony
A watershed looms. Peter
There may well be a backlash from all non maori should National advance the claims of greedy maori. Race relations will ba at the lowest ebb in our history possibly. William
When will everyone wake up and refer to the separatism that exists in NZ by it’s true name – APARTHEID? Geoff
Tell the greedy IWI most of us Non Maori have had a guts full of their increasing ridiculous claims. Send all these greedy sods to Syria and Let the equivalent number so Syrians who are prepared to work hard in their new land and not become a burden on society not like a great deal of the Maori Population. Colin
The maori nonsence has gone on for far too long and should be terminated. Phil
Enough is enough. National you are on the way out if you proceed with this! Ron
I am sick to death of the Maori ‘Give me more and more and more-forever”. Had it not been for the european settlement of NZ in the 1800’s not a single one of the current Maori population would have even been born as history would have been totally different. They are too dumb to even realise this let alone take it into account how fortunate they are that this happened!!!!! Peter
This is a disgraceful proposal and makes a mockery of one New Zealand..the Nat Gove should be hung drawn and quartered for even thinking along these lines..get winsome P on board to help, with the fight. Derek
Should be done now not later. Geoff
This National Government has a huge amount to answer for John Key Nick Smith Bill English being the main players of this debacle of Maori owning fresh water. What planet are they on. What have they to prove by this luducrious suggestion that we should pass legislation to give Maori tribes joint management rights and the power of veto over councils I have never heard of such tripe. Double standards by Nick Smith is just shocking and not worth the paper it is written on. Iwi consultation have to be stopped it is the biggest rort New Zealanders have had since this National Government has been in power. The Treaty Settlement Acts require iwi decision making what a joke just another money making racket. I for one wont be paying no iwi levy on water every time one turns the tap on. What a sad state of affairs this country of ours has become. We must be the laughing stock of the world with all this hocus pocus. Wake up New Zealand vote against this hypocrisy. I take note that Dr Don Brash attended a meeting in Auckland recently on proposals regarding fresh water management I’m not surprised there were less than 100 people there!!!!! Why because no one knew about the meeting. National Government and minister Nick Smith just wants to have secret consultations behind closed doors. Too late New Zealand all signed and sealed. Suzanne
Water should stay in control of central government and elected councils for the good of all and not for the good of a selected few. Richard
If it goes through it’s the first step towards apartheid. Richard
I can not believe that this Govt. can be so stupid as to consider it in the first place. Ray
This is just simple politics so National can stay in power with the Maori party backing. I know for a fact that most MPs don’t agree with it but see it as the price we all have to pay so they can keep their jobs. Shame on you John Key – I’m switching to Winston. Mike
If they persist in following this line I will never vote for National again. In fact they are making stupid suggestions, they obviously don’t listen to voters. Good by John. Ian
We are all New Zealanders, whatever our origin. Darryl
National should stand firm on this unless of course there is an ulterior motive called votes. Warren
This idea is one more in the line of ridiculous divisive PC suggestions. Lets ALL be New Zealanders with a common goal and stop this stuffing about. Bruce
Who’s country is this. If it is OUR country than we ALL own the country. That means we all own the water.. Paymennt for water has nothing to do with those money grabbing activist. I wonder how many are Maori. Let us have a blood test and record that 20%-30%-40% in their passport. Johan
When did National last listen to the wishes of majority? Why will apposing apartheid be listened to now? Answer it wont. Problem is the voting public are yet to realize that the two major parties have nothing to offer, except more lies & deception. The Treaty of Waitangi made us one people under British law. This Government should be sued for treason.. A.G.R.
This is ridiculous and unacceptable – it is ‘Apartheid in Reverse”. This is not a blank page where Maori can keep rewriting their own version of history , according to what is their latest idea and prejudice. Prime Minister John Key said a year or so ago “nobody own the water in NZ “. Lets keep it that way , and not bow to yet another Maori ‘gravy train’. Hylton
There should never be any race based legislation. Dianna
It is ridiculous, water is in the air, is it a air levy next? Mitchell
Racist Greg
We shouldn’t have to be answering this question, the issue should never have arisen. Is National so scared of losing the next election that they are willing to give up a public resource to one small group? Terry
Water belongs to everyone not just 14.9% of the population who in the main have far less than 50% Maori blood. NZ is heading for a major disaster if National keeps handing every thing demanded to this minority money grabbing group. Rog
We all own it. Simon
If they don’t, the rest of us will be paying for every drop we consume! Mark
Absolutely. It’s disgusting! Erika
…of COURSE..!! David
I pray to god they do. If they don’t, the devil will be rampant. Wiremu
Bloody ridiculous! No one should own water rights. Hugh
Maori have no exclusive rights over water. Edward
Most definitely. Fresh water belongs to all New Zealanders. Sue
National should stop pandering to the minority Maori party and adhere to the Treaty – We are one people… Graham
Free resource for all humanity. Robert
Why does iwi have to be in every thing going and who made that they have to have this control over fresh water and other things. Who the hell is running this country !!!!!. Robert
Do Iwi think they should own water throughout the world, the islands that they came from or just New Zealand. Chris
Absolutely, how can Nick Smith “lie” straight in bed at night!!! Allan
Craig Foss says that the government has said the Crown has ownership of water.. FULL STOP. Jeff
This question should never have been asked in the first place. Fresh water belongs to every New Zealander NOT to one small minority. National has lost all credibility for me now to even consider giving away our rights. grrrrrr Diana
It will end up with “Water Water everywhere but not a drop to drink” unless you pay Maori !!!! Ian
New Zealands water is owned by all New Zealand citizens, and no group shoyuld be given jurisdiction based on race. this is aparthied, and is unthinkable. Michelle
NZ is for ALL New Zealanders not a minority racial group. Alan
Surely somehow John Key and his cohort rats can see that NZ is coming under the control of 15% of the population who in fact have probably 85% pakeha blood! John
John Key has no right to hand over control of fresh water to the iwi or anyone else. Water ibelongs to ALL New Zealanders. Lorna
One country one nation. The maori can stick it up their a**. Jim
Having read the whole article this week, I can only conclude that the voters in Nelson are either stupid or ignorant, or disinterested. Nick Smith is an absolute hypocrite and must be told to pull his head in and the National Party should be thoroughly ashamed of their actions. Time to tell Key and Co that Part maori are a 15 percent minority, and that National was elected to govern on behalf of ALL NZers. SHAme on them! Carolyn
I do not think the national government will abandon anything to do with the iwi simply because they the national party want their vote. Have they the Maori not put this country in enough dept. for goodness sake do not sneeze or they will want paying out for that as well. Lionel
Absolutely YES Brian
NZ’rs are becoming sick and tired of this division of the country by racial preferences by the national and labour parties for Maori who should have no more rights to facilities in this country than any other New Zealanders. IAN
Any race based proposal is divisive and will loose National votes. Remember too that there are no Maoris, just Europeans with some (small) degree of Maori blood. The Government has been held to rnasom too long. Get a backbone. Robbie
Absolutely! Scott
Water belongs to everybody! Graeme
YES YES YES but I don’t think it will happen, it’s vote grabbing, it’s absolutely obscene this could be happening. I appeared against the Foreshore Bill but the hearing was just a joke totally decided before the hearing. It’s another gravy train so Maori will just keep making these false claims that they own the water. All these claims and money payouts and they are no better off..one has to earn money to value it..being the high achievers in the drug business, the highest number in prisons, 60% of children under the care of CYS, total disrespect to the Police, people in general..I am so fed up with all these claims because they are never going to stop. Audrey
We don’t want any race to have greater say than any other. We are all NZers. Selwyn
Definitely, since no one owns the water of NZ and if you want control of even small parts of the water you must provide good scientific reason for it. RAY
I have never heard anything so idiotic water belongs to everyone when are our leaders going to stand up and say ENOUGH a few want to run this country WHY what is there long term goals?? Peter
I know that the National Party premis is that Maori were here first and deserve special treatment. No they don’t I will never vote National again!!!! Rob
When are New Zealanders going to wake up to the fact that they are being taken to be of no account. Joe
This is the reason I did not vote for John Key at the last election, he is too wimpy and self serving. Ex ACT party members have no one to vote for anymore! Woe, woe and thrice woe and the awful Helen poised to run the UN!! I abstained, together with many friends……. David
Stop playing games National you are two faced. Lance
I stopped voting for National when they repealed the Foreshore and Seabed act. This is even worse. What next? Roger
If giving away the control of water ownership is what this national Government wants to be remembered for it will be reviled forever. It is quite clear to me and, I assume, many others that either Nick Smith is under instructions to prepare a bill which transfers water rights or he has conveniently suffered an attack of amnesia because in the past he has been definite in his opposition to anything even remotely like this.. He has either changed his mind or somebody is pulling his strings. Bill passed — disaster awaits Mike
Race based legislation on a natural resource can only be bad for the country. Shame on you National and in particular Dr Smith who seems to have changed his spots. Ian
Will Maori pay for damages caused by their freshwater e.g. floods, slips etc. Mike
We all need Air to Breathe and Fresh Water to survive. Len Brown has a monopoly on Water supply and cost of water & effluent has increased by 300 % If Maori gets their way, we will all surely pay sky high prices for our water, to ensure our survival. Pierre
National are committing political suicide by giving Maori decision making on water. Peter
It should be owned by all, not just one race I would tend to ask “is this discrimination”. Sheryl
Never, Never, Never! JOHANNES
…if not a “DIVIDED NATION” will exist for generations….!!! Christopher
Maori have already been given far too many rights the rest of us are not entitled to, this shyte about “We own the water” woul;d be laughable if it were not for our so called leaders even concidering such a racist/ divisive law. Stop all maori claims to anything now, and dump the racist waitangi tribunal farce. Stevo
But they won’t, because John Key is beholden to the Maori Party to get this proposed legislation through – and their agenda is obvious. The alternative would be for National and New Zealand First to go together on this one, and stop it is its tracks; but such is Key’s antipathy to Winston Peters, he would rather sell out to the vested interests of the separatist, racist iwi than do the ethical thing. Graham
I’ve nothing to add this time! Cyril
No One Person Or Race Owns or can control Water. Colin
Water like air is free. There is a danger that at some future time we will pay a royalty fee every time we turn on our water tap. Keith
I’ve had enough of them!! Water belongs to everyone. Enough! Noelene
Maori control of fresh water is a dreadful proposal – it certainly should be dropped. Brendon
Absolutely – it should be abandoned now. Linda
This whole thing is scandalous. I can’t believe it is happening. National deserve to lose the next election because of this. Rodney
I used to vote for National, but if they go ahead and give control of water to Maori, I will never vote for them again and nor will I support them in any way at all. What they are doing is shameful. Michael
National is blaming all of this on MMP. But that’s not correct. They are doing this because they want to. The Maori Party would never leave the coalition if National put their foot down. David