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                                                                                         Photo Sven Carlsson OB1381-04

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Battle site return sought

Bossy Hill donned a colonial uniform as hundreds were drawn back to Opotiki on Sunday for the 150th anniversary commemoration of the Battle of Te Tarata. 

The Government dignified the event by sending Treaty negotiations minister Chris Finlayson, who acknowledged wrongs committed by the Government of the time against Eastern Bay tribes, particularly Whakatohea and Ngati Ira. 

Mr Finlayson acknowledged the confiscation of 181,299 hectares of land, terming it “unjust and excessive”

“It deprived local iwi, hapu and whanau of their resources and the devastating effect of the confiscation is still felt today,” he said.

Whakatohea spokesman Te Kahautu Maxwell said the iwi laid down challenges to the minister on Sunday.

This included looking into the possibility of returning the battle site, now privately owned, to Whakatohea.

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