On a Radio New Zealand interview with Kim Hill, Dr Don Brash made this bizarre comment “The people that arrived before Māori were Moriori then the Māori slaughtered them“.
Dr Brash is quoting his School Journal of July 1916. During world war 1 New Zealand was going through a celebration of British colonisation and the history of the Moriori people was “adjusted” to vilify Māori as conquest over a pre-Polynesian Moriori settlers.
This false history was used to justify a benevolent colonisation of New Zealand by the British. A way of painting a picture if Māori destroyed the Moriori civilisation then that justifies what the British colonists did to Māori. It also helped undermine Māori as being indigenous to New Zealand Aotearoa.
Unfortunately, this is the only history many British New Zealanders are capable of reciting or the conspiracy theories the Welsh, Celtics, Sumerians, Greeks and Americans discovered New Zealand before Polynesians. They are missing fundamental basics of New Zealand history like the Treaty of Waitangi was a gracious invitation from Māori for British colonists to immigrate to New Zealand it was under no circumstances a colonial conquest.
The Morori people came to Aotearoa New Zealand during the great migration with the Polynesians voyagers. Moriori are Maori. See Rewriting-the-history-of-Moriori
The notion that Dr Brash perceives himself as an expert on Treaty issues is questionable considering he is missing vast tracts of basic New Zealand history. Dr Brash owes the Morori people an apology on National Radio for spreading these vicious rumours.