Foreshore and Seabed Legislation

1 Oct 2004 | JUSTICE

Expressing for support for the position taken by various church organisations in their submissions on the Foreshore and Seabed legislation.

Catholic and Anglican Bishops, meeting in Wellington jointly on 22 October 2004, expressed support for the position taken by various church organisations in their submissions on the Foreshore and Seabed legislation.

We wish to draw attention to the remarkable unity of their concerns and recommendations and ask that the Government, other political parties, and all New Zealanders allow time to consider carefully the principles which are at stake.

The church submissions repeatedly state that the present legislation should not be passed in the face of its overwhelming rejection by Maori, as indicated by the consultative hui in 2003, and the submissions to the Select Committee this year. The Crown is required by the Treaty of Waitangi to act in good faith towards Maori, which must mean honest dialogue with Maori when their rights to property are at stake.

The submissions refer to the fact that many of the churches have been actively involved in raising public awareness of the centrality of the Treaty of Waitangi, and that commitment to the Treaty is fundamental to the well-being of our country, which is therefore harmed when legislation appears to over-ride Maori rights and interests.

The church submissions ask that political parties and their leaders move aside from fixed positions on this issue. They believe that a mutually agreed solution can be negotiated between Maori and the Crown. This would involve a willingness to leave aside the present legislation and enter into a longer and more open consultation with Maori in order to reach an amicable solution.

Catholic Bishops

Cardinal Thomas Williams, Wellington

Bishop Colin Campbell, Dunedin

Bishop Denis Browne, Hamilton

Bishop Peter Cullinane, Palmerston North

Bishop John Cunneen, Christchurch

Archbishop John Dew, Wellington

Bishop Owen Dolan, Palmerston North

Bishop Patrick Dunn, Auckland

Bishop Robin Leamy, Auckland

Bishop Max Mariu, Hamilton

Anglican Bishops

Archbishop Whakahuihui Vercoe

Bishop Philip Richardson, Taranaki

Bishop Derek Eaton, Nelson

Bishop Muru Walters, Te Upoko o te Ika

Bishop David Moxon, Waikato

Bishop John Bluck, Waiapu

Bishop Te Kitohi Pikaahu, Tai Tokerau

Bishop George Connor, Bay of Plenty

Bishop Brown Turei, Te Tai Rawhiti

Bishop Richard Randerson, Auckland

For further information:

Bishop Max Mariu : (04) 496 1766 (04) 496 1795
Bishop Pat Dunn : (04) 496 1766 (04) 496 1795
Bishop Te Kitohi Pikaahu : (09) 402 6788; 025 738 931
Bishop Richard Randerson : (09) 373 3424; (09) 303 9500; 021 375 123
Contact for responses : Bishop Richard Randerson, PO Box 37 148, Parnell, Auckland 1