Waatea News Update

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Too many chiefs for Ngapuhi

Ngapuhi elders living in Auckland are concerned too many people are claiming to speak for the country's largest tribe.

A hui been called for Piringatahi marae in West Auckland on Saturday to discuss leadership of those Ngapuhi living in Auckland.

Organiser Wiremu Tairua, says elders want to promote unity, but it's hard to find anyone willing to follow.

Everybody seems to be the chief. The kai korero in other words. And we need to come together to choose the best person to speak on our behalf in Tamaki,” Tairua said.

Wiremu Tairua says Ngapuhi has much to learn from the unity showed by other tribes at Ngaruawahia over the past week.


A web site allowing Maori to find out details of their land holdings is getting 5000 queries a week.

Maori Land Court chief registrar Shane Gibbons says the site is proving a runaway success.

He says previously Maori had to go to a Maori Land Court to research their land, and before 1999 they actually had to go back to the office in which the paper records were held.

He says now all they have to do is go onto the Maori Land Court site and click through to Maori Land Online.

“That has information about all the current Maori land blocks, some 27,000, and you can look up each of those the land blocks and all the information relevant to those land blocks, the owners, the shares, whether there are management arrangements put in place, easements, rights of way, whether there’s a trust and what are the other encumbrances, so it’s very similar to looking at a certificate of title,” Gibbons said.

Shane Gibbons says Maori landowners now have a lot more management option with the advent of mechanisms like whanau trusts, which have removed the need to succeed to shareholdings which could be uneconomic.


A Gisborne-based Maori problem gambling service believes it is reducing the stigma attached to the problem, making it easier to tackle.

Terry Ehau, the manager of Ngati Porou Mental Health Services, says the number of Maori on the East Coast with gambling problems seems to be dropping.

He says one reason seems to be because of the highly visible services on offer in Gisborne.

“Ngati Porou Hauora problem gambling services are more visible, that’s through publicity and accessibility – we have a service that’s based right in the middle of town - and more and more people are becoming okay about attending those services, whereas before it was a secret,” Ehau said.

He said many Maori women turn to the pokies because they lack a feeling of community.

Terry Ehau says his Gisborne-based service is tackling the problem head on by finding positive ways they can fill their time.

Mr Ehau says there seems to have been a drop in problem gambling in the region since Ngati Porou Hauora launched its problem gambling services.

“One of the reasons people become addicted is to cover up some other deficit in their life. Part of the thing with problem gambling services is to replace that addiction with something positive, and one of the things they do is refer them to the exercise programme we run in Gisborne. It gives them another option to fill in their time,” Ehau said.

Terry Ehau says Ngati Porou Hauora is also attempting to make people feel they can admit to a gambling problem without feeling there will be a stigma attached.


A Ngapuhi kaumatua says the northern tribes need to show the same unity other tribes displayed over the past week at the tangihanga for the Maori queen.

Wiremu Tairua is one of a group of elders who have called a hui for this wekend to thrash out who should speak for the Ngapuhi living in Tamaki Makaurau.

Mr Tairua says while other iwi arrived together and were welcomed onto Turangawaewae in a show of unity, the contingents from the north showed up throughout the tangi.

“The people come together. Why not us in Ngapuhi here come together. Everybody come on their own. Ngati Kuri, Te Aupouri come their own. Ngapuhi, Ngati Hine come their own. Why not we change to work together,” Tairua said.

Wiremu Tairua says the hui at Piringatahi Marae in west Auckland on Saturday should allow a single voice to emerge for Ngapuhi in Auckland.

Te Au ki Te Tonga top in Rangitane kapa haka

The hosts of next year's national Te Matatini kapa haka competion have decided who will be the home town representation.

Shannon group Te Au ki Te Tonga were judged top kapa haka at the Rangitane regional competition.

Newcomers Te Whanau o Te Kura Kaupapa Maori o Manawatu came second with a bracket which drew heavily on celebrations of the whakapapa of Rangitane and neighbouring iwi.

Other competitors included Te Ngare o Raukawa from Otakai, Kairanga from the Linton army camp in Palmerston North, and Wairarapa group Te Puke ki Hikurangi, who drew attention with their spectacular costumes.

Many of the groups paid tribute to the recent passing of Dame Te Atairangikaahu.

Te Matatini will be held at Arena Manawatu in February next year.


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