Waatea News Update

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Ngati Apa knocked back by Privy Council

The South Island branch of Ngati Apa says it will continue to fight for its rights on the West Coast, despite a Privy Council decision that it is too late to challenge Ngai Tahu's territorial boundary.

Ngati Apa ki te Waipounamu Trust chairperson Kath Hemi says the tribe is gutted by the decision that it was adequately represented at a Maori Apellate Court hearing in 1990 which determined Ngai Tahu's boundaries.

Mrs Hemi says the the decision has cost Ngati Apa millions of dollars in fisheries settlement assets.

She says cutting Ngati Apa out of the coast goes against a string of court decisions going back to the Crown's Arahura Purchase in 1860.

“The land that is in the Mawhera Incorpation, (it has been sold now, they have a legitimate right to it because it’s in legislation), had Ngati Apa tupuna names on it. I feel grossly offended by the whole thing because it’s one Maori taking from another,” Hemi says.

Kath Hemi says the Privy Council decision should not prevent the Waitangi Tribunal from considering whether the Puaterangi hapu of Ngati Apa still has live interests on the West Coast.

COUNTIES TARGETS MAORI IN HEALTH STRATEGY

Counties Manukau District Health Board has released a new five year strategy which places a priority on addressing the negative health statistics for Maori and Pacific Islanders in South Auckland.

Maori services head Bernard Te Paa says the board will attempt to improve access to its services.

He says the strategy was driven by the community.

“We've been out talking with the com at large for probably last 18 months and we’re reflecting back what the community has told us are the important issues to get right,” Te Paa says.

TUHOE KAUMATUA PREACHES ENVIRONMENT MESSAGE

It's never too late to save the planet.

That's the response of Tuhoe kaumatua Tawhao Tioke to recent gloomy predictions about the future of mankind because of global warming.

Mr Tioke says the west has demonstrated making money is more important than the health of the environment, and the price of that attitude will be high.

He says the traditional relationship between Maori and the environment slows an alternative path.

“They saw the beauty of Aotearoa. They saw the beauty of it. They worshiped it. They spoke to the mountains. They spoke to the sun, the moon, the wind, the rain while they were here. The early voyagers who discovered these islands always remembered to speak to Io Korekore, the unseen one,” Tioke says.

WAIPOAU KAURI FELLED

One of Waipoua Forest's most well known kauri has felled by vandals.

The 165 year old kauri was one of a pair known as The Twins growing beside the road through the Northland forest.

Te Roroa spokesperson Alex Nathan says the Twins marked the start of an ancient hunting track.

It was also one of the trees the iwi collected seeds from, as visitors could see from marks left in the bark.

“One of our people who was one of those climbers is still alive, he’s a kaumatua now. The tree shows all the evidence of those climbing activities. The boots they used in those old days had spikes in the toes, and they’ve kick in the trunk as they climbed the tree, so you can see all those marks still in the bark of the tree,” Nathan says.

Alex Nathan says the Department of Conservation has no clues on who conducted the early morning attack.

ANTI VIOLENCE MESSAGE FOR MANUKAU

The anti violence message is being pushed in an area hard hit by crime.

To mark Family Violence awareness week, Manukau City mayor Sir Barry Curtis will tomorrow launch a teal ribbon campaign to inform people where to go for support if their partner or some other family member turns violent.

Suzanne Pene, an educator from the South Auckland Family Violence Prevention network, says the campaign is a challenge to Maori families in south Auckland, who feature too prominently in police reports.

“Eleven out of the 14 homicides were domestic violence related, and when you consider that Maori make up 15 percent of the population in Counties 60 percent of those offenders and victims are Maori. So in terms of Maori trying to reach out and find some support mechanism, this is a way forward,” Pene says.

Suzanne Pene says it's better to work with people to help identify what triggers their anger, rather than try to step in after a violent act occurs.

MAORI LAND STILL SEEN AS ANSWER TO MAORI HOUSING

Maori who are part owners in multiply owned land blocks are being encouraged to build homes on those blocks.

Associate Housing Minister Dover Samuels says multiply-owned Maori land may be the key to addressing Maori housing problems.

A number of schemes have been tried over the years to make it easier for Maori owners to build on their own whenua, with mixed results.

Speaking from a Maori housing hui in Tauranga, Mr Samuels says it is worth continuing to look for the right formula, because there are sound cultural and economic reasons for using land which is already owned by the whanau or hapu.

“That goes a long way to addressing the affordability situation, where the land and the house can now become affordable,” Samuels says.

Dover Samuels says he is talking to regional councils about ways to overcome some of the obsatacles around bulding on multiply-owned Maori land.

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