Mauistreet: The price of the King’s support

The clever people over at Mauistreet explain that tribal rights and tribal people-power are under attack by the deluded ‘elitists’ at Tainui:

The price of the King’s support

So, Tuku Morgan has revealed the price of the Kingitanga’s support*:

A former head of the Waikato-Tainui executive who plans to stand for the role of the tribe’s parliament chair says he wants to change the way the tribe is governed so the Maori King has the final say over tribal decisions…

Mr Morgan says if he’s elected he’ll work towards making changes to the tribe’s constitution.

He says members must never be able to go to court with tribal issues, and Kingi Tuheitia should be given the right to veto or dissolve a tribal parliament.

Gifting the King the power to dissolve tribal parliaments will not solve the political and structural problems in Tainui. At most, inserting the Kingitanga as the ultimate decision maker will only change the way tribal politics is played. So, rather than engage in legal plays**, ambitious tribal politicians will jostle for standing in the Kingitanga. Lobbying, not law, will be du jour.

As for the structural issues, elevating the Kingitanga will further complicate what is already an unnecessarily complex iwi structure. At the moment the King sits at the top of the line as the ceremonial head, Te Kauhanganui (TK) stands below as the decision making body, Te Arataura (TA) is lower still as the day to day manager and groups like Tainui Group Holdings (TGH) make up the base. It’s a loose Westminster model where the Kingitanga is analogous to the monarchy, TK to Parliament, TA to the Cabinet and TGH and others are analogous to arms of the executive. Under Tuku’s proposal the structure would not change, other than to take ultimate power away from TK and transfer it to the Kingitanga.

Well, under either model, the structure doesn’t fit with the “fundamental principles (that) have emerged over the years as being relevant for most iwi in their structures”. These principles are:

  • the need to establish a structure where the individual iwi members have ultimate control;
  • the legal capacity and powers of the structure are certain; and
  • ownership and management functions are kept separate, as are commercial and non-commercial objectives.
  • Here are the problems:

      1) Under Tuku’s model, the King could dissolve TK and override the will of the individual iwi members. Even then, it’s arguable that individual iwi members do not even have ultimate control over TK and Tainui decision making as it is. TK is not elected on an at large basis. Each Marae puts forward three members to sit on TK, yet those members are not elected on an at large basis either. Arguably, this is not a purely democratic model where “individual iwi members have ultimate control”
      2) the legal powers of each body are not certain. A number of tribal politicians, including Tuku Morgan, have taken to the Courts to test the limits of their power and the power of their opponents. Given the hazy rules, a culture of litigation has developed in the tribe. From the beginning of the 2010 financial year through to 2012 Chapman Tripp collected over $1m in legal fees, Bell Gully collected almost $300,000 (including the 2009 financial year). Over four other firms cashed in as well
      3) ownership (TK) and management (TA) are kept separate under both models. At least that’s one run out of three.

    The troubles in Tainui are not tidy and while I don’t pretend to have all of the answers, I’m sure the answer is not to reduce democracy in favour of feudalism. Structural reform is the key, but that reform must be on democratic terms. Regardless of what you think of Tuku Morgan, Tania Martin or Kingi Tuheitia, I think everyone can agree on that.

    *In a extraordinary letter to Tainui tribal members the King called on leaders in TK and TA to reaffirm their “mandate” and endorsed Tuku Morgan in his bid for the chairmanship of TK.

    **The Court has the final say over the interpretation and application of the rules that govern Tainui. As a result much of the political games that go on in Tainui are, essentially, legal games. Opposing parties merely attempt to strengthen their legal positions rather than cooperate, compromise and so on.
    Posted by Morgan Godfery at 11:45 AM

    8 Comments (+add yours?)

    1. Smithy
      Nov 29, 2012 @ 13:30:23

      Do we need an uneducated, fraudulent, gambling addict autocrate running the show?


      • Tainui on the Web. Eraka's Blog
        Nov 30, 2012 @ 16:05:25

        The worst part is that they are committing fraud on the people that they porportedly represent! One of the main players in Mr Paki’s clique is a convicted fraudster (the bankrupted Tommy Moana) and his right hand man is a convicted child basher (Rangi Whakaruru).


    2. Smithy
      Nov 30, 2012 @ 10:54:36

      The problem with Tainui is that the “Kingitanga” is a post treaty political movement, that has turned into a corporatacracy, now an autocracy.


    3. Ngawai Robinson
      Nov 30, 2012 @ 11:50:25

      It seems to me that last week’s voting was a reflection of our desire for change. What wasn’t revealed to our TKI parliament by the key manipulators namely: Mr Paki, Mr Millar, and Mr Morgan via their p.a. Mr Whakaruru was their next step.

      I don’t agree that Mr Paki, Mr Millar and Mr Morgan should run our waka when we have capable people within TKI parliament (excluding TAA ) we also have Waikato Tainui experts such as; Ngapare Hopa; Ngahuia Dixon; Mamae Takarei; Hera White; Haupai Puke; Tame Pokaia; Koro Wetere: Clint Rickard; Hemi Rau; Piripi Murphy and others too numerous to name.

      The strategic aim from Mr Paki’s office is to capture the Crowns cash top-up payment of $138.5 million being paid out to Ngai Tahu and Waikato-Tainui, following confirmation the treaty settlements have exceeded the $1 billion mark. These guys intend to secure the cash top up for Mr Paki’s personal charity trust so it’s out of the reach and scope of the public audit investigators and the 63,000 Waikato Tainui shareholders… yip that’s us – you and me.

      The Dec 8th scheduled meeting to remove TAA is another smokescreen scam; these people remain faithful to Mr Paki’s dream to have it all. Their tactic isn’t new to us; Mr Morgan used it frequently in order to gain an advantage over TKIs rulings so as to ensure Mr Paki’s plan for an ultimate takeover occurred. Delay, postpone, adjourn, deferral, call it what you want.

      These stupid shenanigans could have been stopped some time ago when the TKI chairwoman had the ear and attention of the Crown law office; to become a co-complainant along myself. Look at what’s happening it hasn’t stopped!

      TKI parliamentary members; I have some solutions and you have a number of choices available to you. To either support Mr Paki’s plan, or call in the CLO to stop this debacle from continuing into 2013; or appoint an administrator[s] etc. These solutions all fall in line with the Incorporated Society 1908 Act.


    4. Tainui on the Web. Eraka's Blog
      Nov 30, 2012 @ 16:02:11

      Nice post Ngawai, you hit the nail on the head. Mr Paki and his co-conspirators are after the relativity clause top up payment which will be approximately $80 million after interest is added, to be paid into Mr Paki’s fake charitable trust.


    5. Smithy
      Dec 02, 2012 @ 08:56:41

      You mean the kupapa clause, contracted to impersonate other iwi and hapu to pretend that they have put in a treaty claim when they have not.

      The hapu of Tainui must uphold their haputanga and get rid of pakeha concept models such as corporatisation and having a king.

      Otherwise you will always be enslaved to the pakeha system.

      Te Wherowhero was not the only Waikato chief that signed the Treaty, Hapu have their own mana.


    6. Angeline
      Dec 02, 2012 @ 22:24:16

      Te Wherowhero never signed te Tiriti o Waitangi but signed its predecessor te Whakaputanga, the Declaration of Independence which declared the ‘kingitanga’ (sovereign power) and ‘mana i te w[h]enua’ (authority in the land) to be held by the CHIEFS of the United Tribes in their COLLECTIVE capacity.
      The current King was chosen to head the Kingitanga movement by hapu and iwi reps OUTSIDE of Waikato. Interfering in the political business of a Waikato Tainui institution is not his job especially at this critical time. His late mother ended up in court for doing a similar thing. Those who took legal action to protect the interests of the marae and hapu who benefit from the Raupatu and Fisheries settlement, were vilified for doing so.
      By writing a letter identifying Tania and Tuku,persuading Kaumatua at poukai and Te Kauhanganui to stand the duly elected chair down in favour of Tuku, displays bias, poor judgment and is a desperate attempt to gain access to the 17% top up, which will be paid out as soon as Waikato agrees on a negotiator. The negotiator gets paid handsomely thousands of dollars while they talk to the Ministers about the $70-$80 million owing.
      If the WRLT chose to give the 33 hapu $2m each ($66m) they would still have $14m in their coffers to waste.
      Roll on Dec 8th, lets see where the MANA really lies.


    7. lacroise
      Jan 28, 2014 @ 16:28:23

      If it wasn’t for Kiingitanga this tribe would have nothing.!


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