Waatea News Update

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Friday, October 06, 2006

Maori Internet wants macron ability

The Aotearoa Maori Internet Society has asked Internet New Zealand to change this country's domain name servers so they can cope with Maori addresses which use macrons.

Chairperson Karaitiana Taiuru says a technical change is required so the servers can cope with non-English alphabets.

Mr Taiuru says Internet New Zealand has agreed in principle to the change, but it will probably be until next year until it is implemented.

He says it's all part of promoting the use of Maori on the Internet.

“It would definitely be good for the Maori language if we could. Just the ability to be able to write macrons in Maori language is a basic human right which we don’t have at the moment. Whether people choose to use a macron or not to use a macron, they still need the choice,” Taiuru said.

Karaitiana Taiuru says people will need the latest browser or a small plug in to read web page text which contains macrons, which are used to indicate vowel length in some languages.


The Association of Staff in Tertiary Education has appointed its first Maori president.

Sharon Stevens of Te Whakatohea and Ngapuhi has served as the union's Vice President for the past four years, and has been a member since 1991

Ms Stevens says it's great to have the support of the 4000 members.

“That's exciting for me, knowing there is support within the union, to accept not only a woman but a Maori woman. I’m very excited about the future for the union because it’s got great things to off other unions in Aotearoa and beyond actually,” Stevens said.

Sharon Stevens says an important part of the role will be building relationships with other unions.


Ngati Kahungunu rally driver, Marty Rostenburg will be among the tens of thousands glued to their TV screens to watch the Bathurst 1000, live from Bathurst this weekend.

He says says the race will serve as a celebration of the career of multiple winner, Peter Brock, who was killed last month while racing in West Australia.

Mr Rostenburg, a former national rally champion and winner of the Wanaka Race to the Sky event, says Brock's professionalism and skill were an inspiration to drivers of all motosports.


It's the last and longest campaign of the second world war, but the people of Te Arawa finally have won a victory on behalf of one of their heroes.

Defence Minister Phil Goff will tomorrow travel to Tamatekaupua Marae in Rotorua to tell the tribe how the Queen plans to honour the late Haane Manahi, who was denied a Victoria Cross for his feats in North Africa in 1943.

Three generals recommended Mr Manahi receive the highest military, but instead British authorities gave him a Distinguished Conduct Medal.
Mr Manahi died in a car crash in 1986, aged 72.

Manahi whanau members and supporters traveled to England with Mr Goff earlier this year to petition the Queen for the medal.

Buckingham Palace has won't award a posthumous Victoria Cross, but it has come up with other measures to honour Mr Manahi, which will be unveiled tomorrow.

After the announcement, Mr Goff will visit Mr Manahi's grave at Muruika Cemetery.


The head of the iwi social service providers association Te Kahui Atawhai o te Motu says Maori service providers get more pressure than their mainstream counterparts because Maori expect more from them.

The association, which represents 137 providers ranging from groups who do mirimiri on the marae to level one approved social service providers throughout the country, held its annual meeting today in the Bay of Islands.

Chairperson Arapeta Hamilton says what unifies sector workers is the desire to do their best for the Maori they work with.

He says that can create challenges.

“The expectation is we will go the extra mile for our whanau and we don’t have the same resources as mainstream but we always go the extra mile. We’re not in it for the money. It’s about passion for the work you do. This is what our people have,” Hamilton said.


Greens Maori spokesperson Metiria Turei says Maori should be careful a debate over minimum wage rates for the fishing industry doesn't damage their international reputation.

Ms Turei says many overseas indigenous communities look to Maori as an example of how they might advance their own struggles for cultural recognition.

Ms Turei says Maori should avoid any perception they are profiting on the backs of low paid workers from other countries.

“We don't want to be the exploiters of indigenous peoples. That is exactly what we have been fighting against and why we got the Maori fisheries settlement, as a recognition of the exploitation that’s happened in the past. To then use those resources to exploit other indigenous people’s is a terrible thing to do,” Turei said.


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