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Auckland Council The Auckland Plan

Auckland and Te Tiriti o Waitangi/the Treaty of Waitangi

Giving life to Te Tiriti o Waitangi in the Auckland Plan can create a more equitable future for Aucklanders and generations to come.


What is Te Tiriti o Waitangi/the Treaty of Waitangi

Te Tiriti is our country's founding document.

It is an agreement between Māori and the Crown, and recognises the unique and special place of Māori as tangata whenua.

The Treaty is an exchange of promises. Rangatira (chiefs) agreed to a relationship where they would share power and authority with the Governor (now the Crown), within different spheres of influence. In return rangatira were promised they would retain authority over their hapū and territories.

There are key differences between the Māori and English text of the Treaty. Today its principles bridge the difference between the two texts and allow the Treaty to adapt to future circumstances. They are the core concepts that underpin both texts.

This foundation of the Treaty is especially relevant to Auckland which has the largest Māori population in New Zealand. Nineteen iwi are represented in Auckland and many mataawaka call Auckland home.

There are various statutory obligations requiring the Auckland Council to consider the Treaty principles and enable Māori participation in decision-making, in recognition of the Treaty guarantee of tino rangatiratanga (chieftainship – authority over hapū and territories).

Looking to 2050, all historical claims under the Treaty should be settled. We will see further development of the case law around the Treaty and its role.

Looking ahead, the impact of Treaty settlements may be seen in Auckland through a range of co-governance arrangements, there will be increased capacity for iwi organisations to engage politically, and ongoing growth of iwi organisations to further invest in Auckland.

Find out more by reading Te Tiriti o Waitangi/the Treaty of Waitangi.