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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Hohepa says Kawharu gave back to community

A Ngapuhi academic says Ngati Whatua chief Sir Hugh Kawharu will be remembered for what he gave back to the community.
Sir Hugh died away yesterday after a long illness, and tribes are making their way to Orakei Marae to pay tribute.

Patu Hohepa, who worked with Sir Hugh at Auckland University, says he was one of the few academics to be actively involved in the leadership of his iwi after many years of academic pursuit.

Dr Hohepa says his tireless efforts to support and guide his iwi won't be forgotten:

“One of the things that has occurred is that there have been a lot of Maori getting through university, but most of them have not turned back to work in the communities and become figureheads as well as chair as well as run treaty claims and marae, and this is one of the things the his life will show us. He did everything,” Hohepa said.


To Parliament now where the Maori Party are wrapping up celebrations for the first year as a team of four in the House.

The Party was presented with a giant fish hook, and it also unveiled its first bill, the foreshore and seabed repeal Bill.

The largely anticipated private members bill which seeks to overturn the foreshore and seabed legislation has yet to be submItted to the table office, and until the Maori Party has canvassed the bill’s detail with other parties, they’re refusing to make the bill’s content public.

The bill will need the support of the National Party, ACT, the Greens and United Future to reach select committee stage, which would be an achievement in itself.

The Bill will be lodged in Tariana Turia’s name, the first Maori Party MP in Parliament who crossed the floor in Parliament against the Foreshore and Seabed Act.


The Health Ministry's chief Maori advisor says Maori Primary Health Organisations are looking for ways to work together to cut down their costs.

The Ministry is developing a business case for a shared management service for seven PHOs stretching from Auckland to Gisborne.

Wi Keelan says any service will need to take account of the cultural differences between Maori PHOs and mainstream health organisations.

“They work under Maori kaupapa with a Maori organisation in governance such as iwi, but basically they are new primary health services that work under a Maori kaupapa. In this particular instance there are seven of them that have come together to develop a shared management service,” Keelan said.

Wi Keelan says because many of the Maori PHO's are smaller than their mainstream equivalents, they struggle to keep management costs down.


Taitokerau MP Hone Harawira says the highlight of his first year as an MP was that the first words spoken in this Parliament were in Maori.

The Maori Party celebrated one year in Parliament today.

Mr Harawira says the party's MPs have spoken 130 times on bills, giving a Maori perspective to the issues tabled.
He says in contrast the Minister of Maori Affairs, has only spoken on three bills.

He says the year has taught him a valuable lesson.

"Don't trust any bugger. You’d like to think you could trust your whanaunga who work in different parties, and that’s not necessarily the case, unfortunately, so it’s been good for us as an independent, because we have supported proposals which are supportive of Maori and the working class as well,” Harawira said.


The funeral yesterday of the King of Tonga has made many people aware of the historic links between Maori and Tongan people.

Maori Television's weekly current affairs programme, Te Heteri, will look at those links and pay tribute to the late Tongan King.

Producer Wena Harawira will speak to Tongan Prime Minister Feleti Sevele on the issues facing the Tonga and what follows the death of its leader.

Ms Harawira says the links between Maori and Tongan people could be a lesson to other Pacific nations.

She says the programme features an interview with Tongan Prime Minister Dr Fred Savele, and also looks at business links between Maori and Tonga.


A four day celebration of Maori writing kicked off in Wellington today.

The fifth annual Maori Writers Festival at the Mercure Hotel is a joint venture between Creative New Zealand, Huia Publishers and the Maori Literature Trust.

Participant Hinemoana Baker, a writer and poet of Ngai Tahu, Ngati Raukawa and German extraction, says this year's theme is love and romance.

She says it's also a chance for Maori writers to support each other.

”This is purely a celebration of Maori writing across the country, There will be emerging writers, and also people like Patricia Grace, who is our star really. So whatever questions or queries or kinds of curiosity you have about writing, the writing world or Maori writing, the next four days in Wellington is the place to bring them,” Baker said.

Hinemoana Baker says the festival also includes contributions from actors and musicians and MPs including Cliff Curtis, Georgina Beyer, Mika and Fat Freddy's Drop.


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