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Reports of the Native Affairs Committee, 1891, No. 2.

No. 288, 1891, Sess. II.—Petition of Wi Pere (No. 2)

No. 288, 1891, Sess. II.—Petition of Wi Pere (No. 2).

Petitioner alleges that certain sums of money awarded him by arbitrators, as interest or mesne profits of the Kohe Bush Reserve have been wrongfully withheld from him through the passing of "The Wi Pere Land Act, 1889," and prays for relief.

I am directed to report as follows: That some years ago the Government took certain land, afterwards known as the Kohe Bush Reserve, belonging to Wi Pere and disposed of it. That, upon page 30complaint being made, the Government agreed to pay the petitioner for the land taken, partly in land and partly in money, the amount and terms to be fixed by arbitrators. The arbitrates found that Wi Pere was entitled to a certain sum of money, representing the capital value of the said Kohe Bush Reserve, with interest thereon. It was finally decided that the petitioner should receive a block of land in the Motu Survey District, containing 1,752 acres, and certain moneys in lieu of what he was entitled to for the Kohe Bush Reserve. That to carry into effect this award an Act was passed called "The Wi Pere Land Act, 1889," but the Government did not pay the interest awarded. That "The Wi Pere Land Act, 1889," provided that Wi Pere should take the land and money in full discharge of all his claims, but Wi Pere was no party to the passing of the Act, and did not consent thereto. That Wi Pere had dealt with the land awarded by the said Act prior to seeing the Act, and was obliged to accept the land or suffer heavy loss, but he protested against the wrong done to him by depriving him of a part of the award. This Committee, having taken all these facts into consideration, is of opinion that, in all good faith, the Government should have carried out their agreement with the petitioner, and that he is justly entitled to the interest awarded.

21st September, 1891.