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Kia ora, The Heritage Trust. We need your help please.
Our whanau [extended family or political unit in the Māori culture of New Zealand] have recently had to endure a case where the DOC entered our whenua [land] without permission. It is the old Hipawa landslide site at Waihi, on the southern lake of Taupo, which is designated as an archaeological site. This is the site where Mananui Teheuheu, paramount chief of Tuwharetoa, was killed along with our whanau, in 1846. Over 200 of our dead have lain at the site since 1780.
The DOC drove over the remains of our tupapaku [ancestors] and over our waahi tapu [“A waahi tapu site has been identified by the Iwi or Hapu [peoples] as a place that is spiritually and culturally important.”] as if it was just another property. They pleaded ignorance but this is unacceptable considering they have access to websites such as yours and were told previously not to enter due to the land being waahi tapu. Is this desecration? They did not telephone us or talk to Kaumatua at all before they entered.
What view does The Heritage Trust hold when incidents like this happen.