Williamson trying to 'overrule the judiciary' says Maori Council

The New Zealand Maori Council says Communications Minister Maurice Williamson has given an 'up you' to the Privy Council with his decision to go ahead with the 2GHz spectrum auction.

The New Zealand Maori Council says Communications Minister Maurice Williamson has given an "up you" to the Privy Council with his decision to go ahead with the 2GHz spectrum auction.

"And they take a very grim view of that," says Maanu Paul, executive chairman of the NZMC.

Announcing that the council will take the spectrum auction issue to the Privy Council, Paul says Williamson is trying to "overrule the judiciary". Maori are in "a no-win situation at the moment if the government won't negotiate, but they're flouting the law of the world", he says. "Williamson is acting in bad faith and being very unreasonable, so we will go back for further direction."

Paul expects the case to go to the Privy Council in December.

The settlement process has to change to avoid this sort of situation, he says. "We want an impartial body established by both sides to sit and decide the level of retribution."

He suggests former Governor Generals Sir Paul Reeves and Dame Cath Tizard as suitable participants.

Williamson says "in the event of legal action, the Crown will defend its case vigorously".

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