The New Zealand Government has run into disagreement with the Maori party regarding fishing rights in the Kermadec Wildlife Sanctuary.
This ocean sanctuary, an area off New Zealand’s coast in which commercial fishing is prohibited, according to historic treaty settlements, is currently a revered fishing ground for many Maori tribes…
Prime Minister John Key was asked to apologise for his misunderstanding on the issue where he, quite unbelievably, assumed that an area being labelled a ‘Prohibited Fishing Zone’ applied to everyone, rather than just those people who weren’t of Maori heritage.
…Meaning that while the majority of New Zealand fishermen must avoid this Kermadec fish playground, anyone who can prove tribal affiliation may plunder its bountiful depths to their heart’s content…
As so often seems to be the case in New Zealand an act of blatant hypocrisy is being forced upon those who consider themselves ‘leaders’, making ongoing support difficult for those of us who consider ourselves ‘followers’.
…This massive double standard, given that it is being executed by the same ‘tribes’ of people who hunted the moa to extinction and who would rather have ownership of land and see it going to waste than not have ownership of the land and see it being put to productive use thus are the very last groups of people who I would consider ‘conservation orientated’, basically renders the concept of ‘Fishery and Wildlife Conservation’ farcical.
Such is the Maori party’s collective outrage at Prime Minister John Key’s failure to understand the issue at hand thereby granting the Maori people freedom to fish the Kermadecs – a right that is so clearly stipulated in the Treaty of Waitangi, circa 1840 – they have threatened to ‘walk away’ from the National party altogether.
The Maori party’s departure would be a terrible blow for National as, with the election drawing ever closer, they must be considering desperate measures as a means of potentially making up those extra few votes.
A bigger issue is perhaps for the Maori party as, without its big brother National, and given that Labour appear to want nothing to do with them, if they don’t stop continually pushing for unrealistic liberties in the name of ‘their people’ and instead start acting like the ‘one people’ they’ve long maintained that we are, they might well be left out in the cold.
Gosh, aren’t politics terribly exciting?
Article by Tim Walker
Edited by Maree Putty
Photography by Uton Cold