National | Iwi

Ngāti Rangi look to settle Ruapehu, Tongariro claims

Ngāti Rangi are now turning their attention to the settlement of Mt Ruapehu and Tongariro National Park following the signing of their $17mil deed of settlement over the weekend.

One million people visit the Tongariro National Park each year, but ownership is yet to be settled.

Iwi lead negotiator Che Wilson says the deal will require a different approach.

“The one area that won't be returning includes the mountain behind me,” says WIlson.

Long-standing issues regarding the Tongariro National Park were presented to the Waitangi Tribunal in 2006.

In 2013 the tribunal reported that the Crown had committed numerous treaty breaches that impacted on ngā iwi o te kāhui maunga.

However, a resolution to these issues could be years away.

Minister of Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Andrew Little says, “the Tongariro national park is a very large national park.  We know that there's land occupied that use to be the rohe of various iwi, so we have to talk about that and so we give ourselves time because this is how we pay respect to the future of the relationship.”

Ngāti Rangi currently has four claims before the Waitangi Tribunal regarding the Tongariro National Park with a strong interest surrounding Ruapehu.

“In time we will settle with others regarding the mountain.  It will include lands and lakes,” says Wilson.

The Kāhui Maunga collective consists of 24 groups, iwi, hapū, whānau meaning the settlement process will take time.

Wilson expects negotiations to begin late this year.