This is the story of a good Kiwi farmer.
Let’s call him Joseph Smith.
Joseph’s family had been toiling the land for generations.
That all changed however the day Joseph signed the Agreement.
The Agreement seemed like a great idea at the time.
Signed by most of the farmers around the country it formalised the Government’s promises of partnership and protection.
It guaranteed the farmers ownership of their land.
It seemed like a way to control the lawless foreign city-dwellers as they flooded into country towns.
A way to work together towards a brighter future.
A few of Smith’s mates refused to sign.
They were wary of the Government and felt it couldn’t be trusted.
They suspected that the Government – run as it was by city-dwellers – was bound to prioritise urban interests.
Smith dismissed their concerns – a decision he bitterly regretted when the Government stole his farm.
This annexation of his family land was of course in breach of the Agreement but the Government didn’t seem to care.
Some of Smith’s friends had their farms stolen too – while his northern cousins sold theirs to the Government – receiving £341 in return for 3000 acres of land – 44 acres of which sold for £24,275 just nine months later.
They had no access to valuation or legal services and by the time they realised they’d been duped it was too late.
Some of Smith’s friends resisted the Government but after seeing their wives raped – their children killed and their homes burnt in retaliation – Smith decided to comply with the foreigners.