Maori and immigration

Early last month, just before I headed off to the beach, a couple of readers forwarded me references to an article written in about 1992 by the late Professor (of Maori Studies at the University of Auckland) Ranginui Walker, headed New Zealand Immigration and the Political Economy.  Having done no more than glance through it, I included a link to the article at the end of a post and went on holiday.

On my return, I sat down and read Walker’s article more carefully, including in the light of the new New Zealand Initiative advocacy report on immigration, which touches lightly on issues of how we should think about New Zealand immigration policy in light of the place of Maori in New Zealand.

Walker’s piece is interesting for two things: first, that is was written in the quite early days of something like the current immigration policy (policy having been reworked considerably over the 1986 to 1991 period), and second because it is a distinctively Maori-influenced perspective.   (Incidentally, Walker’s biographer was Prof Paul Spoonley, now a leading (and MBIE-funded) pro-immigration academic.   It would be interesting to know what Spoonley makes of Walker’s somewhat sceptical assessment of New Zealand’s immigration policy written at a time when the target non-citizen inflows were smaller than they are now (and the stock of migrants was much smaller than it is now).)

Walker argued that modern immigration policy was a matter covered by the Treaty of Waitangi, consistent with his attempt to re-insert the Treaty into contemporary policymaking.  He cited words from the preamble to the Treaty

The original charter for immigration into New Zealand is in the preamble of the Treaty of Waitangi. There, it states that Her Majesty Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom:

“has deemed it necessary, in consequence of the great number of Her Majesty’s subjects who have already settled in New Zealand, and the rapid extension of Emigration from both Europe and Australia which is still in progress, to constitute and appoint a functionary properly authorized to treat with the Aborigines of New Zealand for the recognition of her Majesty’s sovereign authority over the whole or any part of those islands.”

And went on to argue that

The present generation of Maori leaders abide by the agreement of their ancestors to allow immigration into New Zealand from the countries nominated in the preamble of the treaty, namely Europe, Australia and the United Kingdom. But, for any variation of that agreement to be validated, they expect the Government to consult them as the descendants of the Crown’s treaty partner.

Asian immigration, in particular, so it was argued, required formal consultation between the Crown and Maori.  You might find that a stretch –  I do  –  but it does focus attention on the question of just what Maori leaders in the first half of the 19th century were agreeing to when it came to immigration.  I suspect it wasn’t a set of policies that would reduce Maori to a small minority, marginalised politically, in their own land.

British and settler control over New Zealand developed gradually, from the first European settlement at Oihi through to the end of Maori/land wars in the early 1870s, by some mix of acquiescence, agreement (notably the Treaty), annexation  –  and military defence/conquest.  I wrote a post last year drawing attention to a lecture by 19th century Premier Sir Julius Vogel who had noted unashamedly, looking back on the origins of his own huge public works and immigration policy, the role played by a desire to secure the North Island militarily, and so shift the population balance that European dominance of New Zealand would be secured for the future.

I will tell you the real facts, and I think I may say there are only two or three men now living who can speak with equal authority. The Public Works’ Policy seemed to the Government the sole alternative to a war of extermination with the natives. It comprised the construction of railways and roads, and the introduction of a large number of European immigrants. The Government argued that if they could greatly increase the population of the North Island and open up the means of communication through the Island, and at the same time give employment to the Maoris, and make their lands really valuable, they would render impossible any future war on a large scale. They recognised that in point of humanitarianism there was no comparison between the peaceful and warlike alternatives.

In the almost 150 years since then, there have been a variety of motivations espoused for promoting immigration to New Zealand –  including (external) defence, relieving population pressures in Britain, sharing the great opportunities here, possible economies of scale, and more latterly encouraging greater diversity and encouraging possible productivity spillovers.  But whatever the argument, the effect of immigration policy has consistently been to reduce the relative place of Maori in New Zealand.  Non-citizen immigrants are almost inevitably non-Maori, and in a unitary democracy, overall voter numbers count.  Each immigrant lowers the relative weight on Maori in decisionmaking in New Zealand.  And to the extent that immigrants assimilate, it typical isn’t with Maori culture.

In his article, Ranginui Walker touches on one of the ways in which policymakers have sought to avoid confronting the issue.  Writing of the 1986 review of immigration policy he notes

The review asserted that New Zealand is a country of immigrants, including the Maori, thus denying their prior right of discovery and millennial occupation of the land. Defining the Maori as immigrants negates their first-nation status as people of the land by lumping them in with the European immigrants who took over the country, as well as later immigrants from the Pacific Rim. Furthermore, the review disguised the monocultural and Euro-centric control over the governing institutions of the country by claiming that immigration has molded the national character as a multi-cultural Pacific country. This multi-cultural ideology is a direct negation of the Maori assertion of the primacy of biculturalism.

In other words, if Maori are just another minority there is no distinctive place, or no particular need to be sensitive to the implications of immigration policy for them.

A few years later, the Business Roundtable (forerunner to the New Zealand Initiative) commissioned Australian-academic Wolfgang Kaspar to write a paper on immigration policy in a New Zealand context.  Kaspar –  and the Roundtable –  were dead keen on freeing up immigraton, seeing it as one important element in a strategy to lift New Zealand’s economic and productivity performance.    Commenting on how Kaspar treats the Maori issue, Walker wrote

Kaspar’s views on Maori policy are also a matter for concern. With few exceptions, most Maori would reject his sooth-saying that they should not fear becoming a smaller minority in a situation where land and resources would be “competed away.” Like Job’s comforters, he says: “They (Maori) could instead live in a nation of many minorities where the Maori minority fitted in much better as an equal social group.” Kaspar’s view is advanced with the ignorance and naivete of the outsider who knows nothing of the 150-year struggle of the Maori against an unjust colonial regime. The reduction of the Maori to a position as one of many minorities negates their status as the people of the land with bi-cultural treaty rights and enables the government to neutralize their claims for justice more effectively than it does now. Furthermore, new migrants have no commitment to the treaty. For these reasons, the ideology of multiculturalism as a rationale for immigration must be rejected. Although its primary rationale is economic, the government’s immigration policy must be seen for what it is — a covert strategy to suppress the counter-hegemonic struggle of the Maori by swamping them with outsiders who are not obliged to them by the treaty.

One doesn’t need to be comfortable with the rhetoric – I’m not – to see Walker’s point.  Whether by design (less probably now) or as a side-effect that the policy designers are largely indifferent to, large scale immigration simply reduces the relative significance of Maori in New Zealand.  It has done that in new ways in recent decades as much of the immigration has been non-Anglo.  For decades, immigration was mostly British, which left Maori as a small minority in their own country, but as at least the only “other” group.  Modern migration patterns risk treating Maori as simply one minority among many –  perhaps even, in time, with outcomes similar to (say) California where there is no longer any majority ethnicity.

Some of Walker’s article is now quite dated, but I think it is still worth reading if only because such perspectives don’t seem to get much airplay in the mainstream policy discussions.  And when occasionally people do make the point about large scale immigration undermining the role of Maori and the Treaty, they are often simply batted away with rather glib reassurances that today’s politicians –  who can make no commitments about how politics plays out 20 years or more hence – simply can’t back up.

(Although it isn’t my focus today, the first person to refer me to the Walker article highlighted this quote about the emphasis on large scale immigration to New Zealand

this policy does not take into account the fact that New Zealand is a primary producing country, it is resource poor in terms of minerals and oil, and is the most distantly placed country from world markets. It is difficult to produce competitively priced manufactured goods with the plussage of high freight costs on top of manufacturing costs.

Walker wasn’t an economist, but his observation is passing doesn’t seem to have been undermined by developments in the last 25 years, in which New Zealand’s overall economic/productivity performance has languished, despite the huge influx of new people.)

Last week, the New Zealand Initiative released their advocacy report, making the case for continued – or perhaps even increased –  high levels of non-citizen immigration.  It is an unsatisfactory report in several respects –  for example, the subtitle “Why migrants make good kiwis” seems to rather deliberately(?) miss the point that should guide policy; do migrants make existing New Zealanders better off –  and I’ll have quite a bit to say about various aspects of it over the next week or two.    But today I just wanted to focus on the treatment of the Maori dimension.

As the report notes

Many Maori too are concerned about immigration, seeing it as a threat to their unique position as the first people to settle in New Zealand


The Election Survey reveals that Māori are significantly less favourable towards immigration than other New Zealanders, and Māori are significantly more likely to want reduced immigration numbers. They are also less likely to think immigration is good for the economy, and more likely to see immigration as a threat. This finding remains even after controlling for age, religion, marital status, home ownership, household income, education, gender, and survey year.

The authors note

This is clearly a concern for New Zealand, where Māori and the Treaty of Waitangi occupy a special cultural and constitutional role in society and national identity. Given the low barriers to obtaining voting rights in New Zealand, there may be a fear that allowing migrants to express these views at the ballot box would dilute Māoridom’s special standing.

That is all fine, but what sort of response do they propose?

The range of policy responses to this problem are fairly limited. Cultural education programmes for migrants may sound appealing, but it is unclear how successful they would be in changing views. Some migrants may simply see it as a tick box exercise to be endured to gain entry into the country, and may not have the intended effect on
migrant attitudes towards Māori and their place in New Zealand.

Indeed, and even if it it had the “intended effect” that wouldn’t alter the inevitable shift in the population balance.  Maori –  like others –  might reasonably be assumed to want power/influence, not just understanding or consideration.

We have also considered a values statement, such as the one used in Australia. All visitors to the country are required to sign this document, affirming to abide by Australia’s largely Western values. Although this idea is appealing, it has two main weaknesses. First, New Zealand has yet to formally define its cultural values. Unlike Australia, or many other nation states, New Zealand does not have a single constitutional document. Instead, New Zealand’s constitutional laws are found in numerous documents, including the Constitution Act 1986, the Treaty of Waitangi, the Acts of Parliament, and so on. This allows the nation state of New Zealand to function, but does little to define what it is to be a New Zealander, and what set of national values need be upheld. Until this is done, it would be difficult to craft a robust and useful values statement. Even if it were possible, without constitutional protection, it would be subject to change according to political whim. Second, any values statement would still suffer from the pro forma weakness that a cultural education programme is subject to.

I don’t disagree that a “values statement” isn’t the answer, partly because in a bi-cultural nation there will be differing values –  things that count, ways of seeing and doing things –  even between the two cultures.    But they go on.

A partial answer to this problem may be to shift the burden from the immigration system to the education system. The national curriculum, which acts as a reference guide for schools in New Zealand, places significant emphasis on learning Te Reo and the cultural practices of Māori.   This may do little to address concerns about the attitudes primary migrants have towards Māori in New Zealand, but may influence the attitudes of second generation migrants. This is far from a complete solution, and monitoring attitudes of migrants to Māori, and vice versa, is advisable.

Indoctrination by the education system would seem equally likely to provoke backlashes, and –  of course –  does nothing to deal with the population imbalance issue.  As the final rather limp sentence concedes,  the report hasn’t actually got much to offer on this issue at all.  They go on to conclude

There are also cultural dilution concerns of the Māori community regarding high levels of immigration threatening their unique constitutional position in New Zealand. These areas require attention from policymakers if the current rates of immigration are to be maintained.

But surely if think-tank reports are to be of any real value they need to confront these issues and offer serious solutions, not just kick the issue back to busy and hard-pressed policymakers?

By the time we get to the conclusion of the whole report, things are weaker still

Māori views on immigration policy should be welcomed. A more inclusive process is needed to instruct migrants on the key place Māori hold in New Zealand society.

It is both condescending in tone –  both towards Maori and to migrants –  while not actually substantively addressing the real issues, which aren’t just about sensitivity, but about power.

It is difficult not to conclude that in putting the report together the New Zealand Initiative had a strong prior view on the merits of large scale immigration globally, but could do no more than handwaving when it came to an important consideration in thinking about immigration policy and its implication in New Zealand.   Of course, libertarians –  as most of the Initiative people would probably claim to be, or accept description as  –  tend to have little sense of national identity or sub-national cultural identity; their analysis all tends to proceed at the level of the individual.  But most citizens, and voters, don’t share that sort of perspective.

I don’t want to sound like a bleeding heart liberal in writing this, or to suggest a degree of identification with, or interest in, Maori issues and culture which I don’t actually have.  My family have been here since around 1850, but I have no family ties with Maori, whether by blood or by marriage, and am quietly proud of my own Anglo heritage.  In many respects I probably identify more easily with people and cultures in other traditionally Anglo countries than I do with Maori.  But this seems to me a basic issue of fairness, including a recognition that (empirically), there is such a meaningful group as Maori, and that on average they see some –  but far from all – issues differently than non-Maori.  No doubt there is about as much diversity among Maori as there is, say, among Anglo New Zealanders, but the differing identities are meaningful and show up in various places, including in voting behaviour.    And the inescapable point remains that New Zealand is the only long-term home of Maori.

I’m not one for apologising for history, and of course we can’t change history.  But current policies changes the present and especially the future.  Every temperate-climate region in the Americas and Australasia saw indigenous populations swamped in the last few centuries –  between the power of the gun, and the prospects of greater prosperity that superior technology and economic institutions offered.  Compared with, say, Canada, Australia, the United States, and Argentina, Uruguay and Chile, the indigenous population remained a larger share of the total in New Zealand.

This isn’t mostly a post about economics.  It is impossible to do a controlled experiment, but I think there is little doubt that the indigenous populations of all those countries of European settlement are better off economically today than they’d have been without the European migration –  even though in each of those countries indigenous populations tend to underperform other citizens economically.  But, those gains have been made, and at what cost have they come in terms of self-determination and control?    It isn’t easy for members of majority populations to appreciate what it must mean for a group to have become a disempowered minority in their own land.  For some it is probably not an issue at all, for others perhaps it is of prime importance, for most perhaps somewhere in between, important at some times and on some issues, and not important at all on others.

If there were demonstrably large economic gains now, to existing New Zealanders, from continued (or increased) large scale immigration there might be some hard choices to make.  Perhaps many Maori might even accept a further diminution of their relative position, as the price of much greater prosperty.   But there is simply no evidence of such economic gains –  whether in the New Zealand Initiative report or in other analysis of the New Zealand position.     If so, why should we ask of –  or simply impose on (we don’t have a federal system, with blocking power to minorities) –  Maori New Zealanders a continuing rapid undermining of their relative position in the population, and in voting influence in New Zealand?

Much of this comes to, as in many ways it always has, fairly crude power politics.  But the quality of a democracy should be judged in significant part by how it protects, and provides vehicles for the representation of the interests of, minorities.  A minority population, that was once the entire population of New Zealand, seems to have a reasonable claim to a particular interest in that regard.  Advocates of large scale immigration to New Zealand –  whether politicians or think tanks or business people-  might reasonably be asked to confront the issue, and our history, more directly.



31 thoughts on “Maori and immigration

  1. Cheers Michael.

    A proper take on Māori and immigration would be a worthy report in its own right. We did talk with, and had our report reviewed by, an analyst at Te Puni Kōkiri with a strong academic background in immigration issues (usual disclaimer applies). But we hardly pretend to have solved this particular issue. That said, while it did feature prominently in the earlier debates you cite, it seems absent from current debates – barring our having brought it back somewhat.

    We mostly focused our attention in the places where there seems to be most current public debate: what does the evidence say about the effects of migrants on house prices, on employment, on crime, and whether we seem likely to wind up with terrible outcomes like in European immigrant ghettos.


  2. I’ve raised the issue previously too (both in the Vogel post, and in my talk at your diversity forum a while ago but yes I take your point. It has interested me that the Maori Party hasn’t made it an issue, altho I noticed a full page advert from them at the weekend suggesting that might now be changing.

    And of course I agree with you on crime, employment and ghettoes.


  3. Thank you for your article

    Most of the NZ Initiative people …. tend to have little sense of national identity or sub-national cultural identity … of course … most of them are not of this land

    The roots of my family are european … but I was born in New Zealand … and raised in New Zealand … growing up among the Maori .. our family had a close relationship with the family of a Rotorua tohunga who in turn had a significant influence on my childhood opening and taking me through doors that few pakeha have been through … so unlike you we have not been here quite as long as you, but I do identify with Maori

    I have just returned to these shores after many years in Australia, living through the over-turn of the legal fiction of Terra-Nullius and the 1992 Mabo decision establishing native title to the lands

    Which leads to the following imbalance

    North America: The total population of the north american indian is 4.5 million while correspondingly there are in excess of 3 million illegals in USA at any given time: They are breeding the indigenous population out of existence

    Australia: The total aborigine population is 450,000 and not increasing, yet Australia brings in 400,000 new migrants each year. The government is hell-bent on breeding them out of existence

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Surely a relevant question to ask would be: What has actually happened to Maori people, both in terms of relative socioeconomic outcomes and political standing in society, since immigration reform in the 1980s?

    I don’t want to be all rose-tinted glasses, but here are a few observations:
    * The Treaty of Waitangi process has been a cross-partisan priority, and over 80 Treaty settlements have been delivered. Some settlements have resulted in transfers of significant assets to iwi, who have proceeded to spin them out into successful and growing businesses.
    * We have had two Maori Deputy PMs (Winston Peters and Paula Bennett); several independent Maori-oriented political parties have formed and achieved representation in Parliament and Government.
    * Gaps in socioeconomic performance between Maori and Pakeha have narrowed in some areas (including life expectancy at birth, infant mortality, NCEA achievement, university degrees, workplace injuries, housing affordability and crowding), but stayed constant or widened in some other areas (including median incomes and unemployment). See
    * Between 2001 and 2013, the share of New Zealanders reporting Maori descent on the Census went from 18% to 17.5% – not exactly a dramatic drop.

    Basically, actual outcomes since immigration reform are not consistent with declining relative socioeconomic outcomes and political standing for Maori.


    • Fair points, altho the point I didn’t make in my post was that the Maori share of the population had increased very markedly over the last 100 years – and Maori birth rates remain higher than European – so the inevitable dilution of Maori influence from immigration is relative to a counterfactural in which the Maori share would have been rising ever faster.

      My story doesn’t require, or expect, deteriorating relative economic outcomes for Maori – but simply that things in NZ aren’t done “the Maori way” (predominantly) and the extent to which they are done the Maori way will diminish – relative to the domestic population trends counterfactual – the more we continue to promote large non-citizen immigration flows


    • I think we also need to understand that the Treaty exists primarily because the British Empire was not able to bombard Maoris out of existence. The Treaty was the start of a massive land grab through gun diplomacy leading to the NZ Land Wars and the setup of the Maori Land Courts driving Maori into small reservations.

      When Gareth Morgan describes his so called 3rd stage and approaching the final Treaty settlements, I think he is kidding himself. There is no approaching final settlements not when Maori used to own 100% of Aoteroa and now less than 20%. Maori is also now embarking on fishing rights, air rights and water rights throughout NZ.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Not sure I agree with that interpretation. There were mixed motives from the British, and the looming risk of the French, and even if neither had intervened, there was already lots of land being sold to non-Maori by fair means or foul. The Treaty itself seemed well-intentioned, probably on both sides.


      • With the appointment of Willie Jackson to a possible number 2 in a Labour Cabinet, this is now a race as to who would become the first Maori Prime Minister of NZ. Paula Bennet? Willie Jackson? Or Winston Peters?


      • Oh yes I forgot to add, also control of government and the ultimate control of the law making. I don’t think the British ever had that intention when drafting the Treaty.


  5. The types of businesses that Maori has significant interests ie Fisheries, Tourism are somewhat targetted towards asian which does tend to mute objections to migration from those asian countries as a preference over English or European migrants.


    • They do not sell fish that have invitation cards in their mouths asking people to stay. Tourists are welcome to have a look and then they go home – tourists are holiday makers, not migrants. Just like most business people they have engaged in a business which has a market – it does not mean they are telling the market to come and live at their house.


  6. A wonderful piece, Michael. I had been meaning to read the Ranginui Walker article over the holidays as well (he’s a national treasure to my mind) – but have yet to get around to it. You have inspired me to now remedy that failing – and the article is printing as I type :-).

    That you care enough about the subject of immigration to go out of your way to become informed and then contemplate seriously that Maori perspective is commendable.

    I have no Maori ancestry but my grandchildren do – and I couldn’t be prouder about that myself or for them. Unrelated but related – this is another wonderful piece (by another national treasure);

    Liked by 1 person

  7. A good article. But not as powerful as Ranginui Walker’s article which I read a few days ago and could barely restrain cheering as I read it. A joy to read something so confidently written – I loved the remark about immigration reports written by ‘mediocre academics’ and the inevitable pollution of Manakau harbour the same day it was headlines in the Herald. It was as if he had seen the future. [However as per Michael Reddell I have reservations and it does show inevitable signs of being written a generation ago].
    Note I had never heard of either Walker or Reddell until a week ago.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Excellent article Michael. Thank you for writing this. My own anecdotal evidence (living and working in a majority Maori area) suggests the main reason that Maori are less favourable to immigration than other groups in our society is that they (and their ancestors) have been impacted in many negative ways and therefore more (and increased) immigration will only cause further harm.
    Whilst, many may claim Maori are merely immigrants themselves and therefore have only slightly more of a claim to this land by being first here, this view is fallacious. By the time that Europeans arrived, Maori collective memory of where they had come from had faded into myth and legend, thus making them indigenous. Hence, while the destruction and disenfranchisement of indigenous populations may have been common in the past, I think we can no longer maintain any moral high ground by continuing to do so regardless of the rationale for doing so, be it economic, social or otherwise.


    • The Maori Party have adopted a new populist and racist anti-immigration policy. But whereas populists like Winston Peters have suggested there’s too much asian immigration, the Maori Party say there are too many whites coming to New Zealand. Party leader, Tariana Turia lamely rejects the comparison, saying ‘No, we aren’t playing the race card, because we are not talking about Asian immigration.’


      • I do not understand your point. The linked article was dated 2007. The Maori party (who only represent a small proportion of Maori) have not implemented any such policy in their 10 years as a government support partner and I cannot find any reference to such policy in their most recent manifesto.
        My point, and Dr Ranginui Walker’s, is that immigration policy can be racist policy (either by design or by implication) as it can disempower and disenfranchise indigenous peoples, such as Maori.


    • 04/09/2011 A Maori academic says immigration by whites should be restricted because they pose a threat to race relations due to their “white supremacist” attitudes.

      The controversial comments come in response to a Department of Labour report, obtained exclusively by the Sunday Star-Times, which found Maori are more likely to express anti-immigration sentiment than Pakeha or any other ethnic group.

      Margaret Mutu, head of Auckland University’s department of Maori studies, agreed with the findings and called on the government to restrict the number of white migrants arriving from countries such as South Africa, England and the United States as they brought attitudes destructive to Maori.

      “They do bring with them, as much as they deny it, an attitude of white supremacy, and that is fostered by the country,” she said.


      • Thanks, but I’m still unsure of your point. If you read further in above linked article (I am sure the content of those quoted has been heavily edited in order to facilitate a headline) the following is stated which concurs with my (and seemingly Dr Walker’s) experience:

        “Massey University sociologist Paul Spoonley said his research showed while other ethnic groups’ attitudes toward migrants had been approving, Maori perception had become increasingly negative. Anti-immigration sentiment was fed by Maori fears that multicultural policies were diminishing policies concerning Maori, he said.
        Mutu said she was concerned that relations between Maori and other minority groups had deteriorated.
        “Maori feel very threatened as more groups come in and swamp them.”


      • If you think strategically, control of the government rests with a majority white NZ. In order for Maori to gain control of the government and ultimately law making powers,

        1. Massive repopulation of Maori in NZ
        2. Reduce white population
        3. Increase non white migrants

        Option 1 will take too long.
        Option 2 will take too long
        Option 3 is the fastest strategic option in diluting white majority and therefore allowing Maori to wrest government control and ultimately law making powers. Makes complete strategic sense to increase non white migrant numbers from a Maori perspective.


      • Even in terms of your hypothetical, it assumes non-white migrants will, over time, be more likely to vote in Maori interests, than in the interests (to the extent they differ) of the “white” earlier-immigrant population. Is there any evidence tending to provide support for that proposition?


      • Michael, the Treaty of Waitangi prevents non white majority rule. This is a bi Party agreement to the exclusion of any other migrant party. Maori already is ahead of any minority migrant groups by having 7 guaranteed Maori seats in any parliament.


      • Under MMP, the 7 seats make a huge difference. As a result, in order to counter the effect of those 7 seats, Maori representatives are now rising the ranks of the major political parties to counter the effects of these Maori seats.National has moved a Paula Bennet to number 2. Labour wants Willie Jackson in the top ranks. Green Party has a Maori number 2. Then of course there is Winston Peters as a number 1 and NZFirst sure looks like a Maori party that’s playing bad cop and good cop giving whites an opportunity to support a good cop Maori party alternative. Then you have the Maori party that was formed to take down the Labour Party due to Helen Clarke Foreshore and Seabed Act. National with the Maori Party supply and support agreements removed the Foreshore and Seabed Act and replaced that with Tribal property rights to Foreshore and Seabed.

        As you can see, even though 25% of NZ are migrants, the bi party Treaty of Waitangi does prevent non white migrants from rising up the list ranks and because migrants are from diverse backgrounds, there is not a single minority party that would challenge Maori as number 1 and number 2.


      • ‘Honouring the Treaty without creating division. Rangatiratanga can be achieved by devolving decisions and giving Maori equal representation in the Upper House. Pakeha must understand our Treaty obligations and to achieve that Te Reo must be compulsory in schools.”

        Gareth Morgans Opportunity party is also clearly seeking the 7 Maori seats offering monetary and financial backing to enshrine the Treaty of Waitangi into a NZ constitution and inserting Maori directly into a Upper House right into the powerhouse of law making.


  9. maui-da-trickster
    January 14, 2017 at 9:21 am

    Many Maori my generation consider migration from some countries (the UK in particular) as re-colonisation, and that the relationship between Peoples is enshrined in the Treaty of Waitangi and this is the starting point for the invitation to settle (Ranginui Walkers broad point).

    Having said that, in academia immigrants are important consumers of Maori courses including te reo. Around a third to a half of my postgraduates were international students specifically looking to learn about Maori approaches to environmental management. And yes some are looking for residency.

    The commonality on these 3 comments to Maori seems to suggest that white immigration triggers deep rooted fears of re-colonisation. Those same re-colonisation fears are not reflected in the immigration from other races.


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