Waatea News Update

News from Waatea 603 AM, Urban Maori radio, first with Maori news

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Monday, June 26, 2006

Whakatane wananga faces job cuts

Another Maori tertiary institution is facing job cuts.

Staff at Whakatane-based Te Whare Wananga o Awanuiarangi have been told up 70 jobs, almost a third of the total, could be cut.

It follows restructuring at Te Wananga o Aotearoa, which slashed more than 300 jobs from its campuses around the country and centralised many of its operaitons.

An Awanuiarangi spokesperson said a consultation document has gone out to all staff.

The tertiary sector is facing pressure because of changes in the government's funding formulas, and because the number of people in permanent work is reducing the pool of potential students.

The three wananga have also reported that political attacks on Te Wananga o Aotearoa last year also affected enrolments.


Maori are calling on the government to stop stonewalling the United Nation's declaration on the rights of indigenous peoples.

The declaration, which has been 20 years in the making, comes up for a vote at the new UN Human Rights Council meeting in Geneva this week,

Catherine Davis, who has represented Far North iwi Te Rarawa at the UN's Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues in
New York last month, says New Zealand has joined with Australia, the United States and Canada to oppose the declaration.

Ms Davis says New Zealand should be supporting the declaration, because it affirms the same kind of rights supposedly guaranteed by the Treaty of Waitangi.

Catherine Davis says the New Zealand government refuses to meet with Maori to explain its opposition to the indigenous rights declaration.


The head of the New Zealand sports academy in Rotorua says Maori elite athletes aren't thinking enough about their alternatives if their sporting careers are cut by injury or sickness.

Jim Love says the injury this weekend to Maori rugby league star, Benji Marshall, is a reminder of how fickle a professional sports career can be.

21 year old Marshall is expected to have his third shoulder reconstruction, after a clash with a Penrith forward in the Tigers loss over the weekend.

Mr Love says the injury could end to Marshall's career, and should serve as a warning to aspiring athletes who want to give up school for sports.


Maori involved in the development of the United Nations declaration on the rights of indigenous peoples say the Government is refusing to talk with them.

New Zealand has joined Australia, the United States and Canada in opposing the current draft of the draft declaration, which will be considered by the UN's Human Rights Council in Geneva this week.

Te Rarawa lawyer Catherine Davis, an Indigenous Fellow at the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in 2005, says the Government no longer talks to Maori about the declaration.

Catherine Davis says Maori want New Zealand to back the document which has emerged from 20 years of discussions and negotiations between governments and indigenous peoples.


Rotorua is being touted as an ideal venue for a high performance Maori sports academy.

Former Maori All Black Jim Love has run the New Zealand Sports Academy in the sulphur city for the past eight years.

He says while they have concentrated on Rugby and League players, there is potential to attract more top Maori athletes from other codes.

Mr Love says such a programme would offer guidance in other areas besides sport

Jim Love says many athletes don't think about what happens if their careers don't take off or falter, ands they don't give themselves alternative options.


Labour list MP Shane Jones says Maori parents need to get behind their childrens' efforts to read.

Mr Jones was at Pakotai and Kaikohe primary schools yesterday handing out books as part of the Duffy Books scheme and the Government book week.

He says too few children are taken to libraries, and too much time is spent on computers.


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