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Reports of the Native Affairs Committee, 1876.

Report on the Petition of Tapa te Waero, a Chief of the Ngarauru Tribe

Report on the Petition of Tapa te Waero, a Chief of the Ngarauru Tribe.

The petition consists of 27 clauses, in which is set forth the proceedings and conduct of the Ngarauru tribe between the years 1865 and 1875.

The petitioner describes the claims of his hapu to certain confiscated lands near the Waitotara River, and the acts of ownership which he and his friends have peformed.

He alleges that although his tribe joined Titokowaru in 1868, in his war against the Europeans, they did so under compulsion, and that they succeeded in saving the lives of several Europeans on that occasion; and that, moreover, their offence of fighting against the Queen was atoned for subsequently by serving with the Europeans against Te Kooti.

The petitioner states that a few months ago he took possession of land at Okotuku, near his old cultivation, and that proceedings were taken against him in the Supreme Court at Wanganui for doing so.

On that occasion the Judge recommended him not to take the law into his own hands, and that pursuant to that advice he now petitions Parliament, and prays that a searching inquiry be made into his case.

The Committee have taken the evidence of the petitioner on the allegations of the petition, and have also examined Mr. Wi Parata, the Hon. Wi Tako, Major Kemp, the Hon. Sir Donald McLean, and Captain Wray, the Commissioner for Confiscated Lands at Patea.

I am directed to report as follows:—That the Committee recommend that inquiry be instituted into the ease of the petitioner, with a view to ascertaining whether the allegation made by him, that his hapu have not been provided with land in the Waitotara district on which to settle, is or is not correct. And further, if it should appear that the original intention of the Government to provide sufficient land for the settlement of the Ngarauru tribe, near their old cultivations, has not been carried out in respect to this particular hapu, the Committee recommend that land be provided for the settlement of the petitioner's hapu as far as practicable, in accordance with such original intentions.

John Bryce,

27th September, 1876.