The Hon. the Colonial Secretary to His Honor the Superintendent, Otago.
I have the honor to enclose a copy of a letter dated the 5th August last from the Native chief Hori Kerei Taiaroa, representing the claims of the Natives in Otago to the reserve known as the Princes Street Reserve, in Dunedin, which was granted to the Superintendent of Otago under "The Public Reserves Act, 1854," in a Crown Grant dated the 11th January, 1866.
After a careful consideration of all the circumstances connected with the Native claim to this reserve, and with the Crown Grant referred to, the Government is of opinion that the question of the validity of the grant should be submitted to a proper judicial tribunal.
The best mode of testing the question of law appears to the Government to be by "Writ of Intrusion;" and I have to propose to your Honor that this mode of bringing the matter before the Supreme Court be taken.
The expenses attending the process will be chargeable on the contingencies of the Native Department, or on the proceeds of the reserve, according as the issue may be.
As it is important that this question should be determined without delay, I have to request your Honor to be good enough to favour me with a reply at your early convenience.
I have, &c.,
His Honor the Superintendent, Otago.
E. W. Stafford.