Waatea News Update

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Monday, May 14, 2007

Students gripe at budget top up

The new head of the Maori Tertiary Students Association says a $40 million funding boost in the budget for universities isn't enough.

The money, spread over four years, is to support change in key areas, including increasing the achievement of groups such as Maori.

Victor Manawatu says it will be a pittance by the time it gets to Maori students.

He says the government is taking a piecemeal approach to the sector without facing the real problems facing Maori students.

“We're still talking about high fees. We’re still talking about eligibility of allowances. Only 29 percent of all students are eligible for student allowances, so they’re not really addressing the real poverty line,” Mr Manawatu says.

He says the government still hasn't come up with a suitable replacement for the Manaaki Tauira grants and scholarships for Maori students, which were axed last year.


Eight marae in the Franklin area are taking a new approach to improving the health of communities along the lower Waikato river.

The Project coordinator from Huakina Development Trust says each marae will choose a kaiwhakahaere or health worker to develop and run Oranga Pai programmes, which are a mix of physical activity and nutrition advice.

Ms Ratu says the initiative was developed after a Port Waikato kuia approached primary health organisation ProCare Network Manukau because of her concern about the poor health levels among the 6 thousand Maori living in the region.

“She was just concerned at the level of people who were diabetic and having dialysis and the fact that our mokopuna think that it’s normal to be diabetic and normal to go up to dialysis every day abnd shew just became very concerned about that and started talking until she got the right person,” Ms Ratu says.

The Marae Hauora Project involves ProCare Network Manukau, Maori providers, local iwi, the Counties Manukau District Health Board and Counties Manukau


Maori followers of the Baha'i faith now have a book in te reo to consult.

Spokesperson Cheryl Davis from Ngati Hine says the inspiration for the project was the large and growing number of Maori Baha'i.

She says because the original book was written in a poetic form, much of the content was translated as waiata and moteatea for Maori readers.

“The English version was translated from Persian, so it went from Persian to English and now it’s gone to Maori, and the beauty of the English version is just as beautiful in Maori of course,” Ms Davis says.

Baha'i, which has its roots in Shi'a Islam, has been established in Aotearoa for 50 years.


Former Maori affairs minister Tau Henare says he's going to hammer his former ministry and its minister until it lifts its performance.

The National list MP says Te Puni Kokiri has handed out almost $1.5 million in contracts without calling for tenders, in breach of its own rules.

He says the performance of the Maori development ministry TPK leaves a lot to be desired.

“You can get away with some sloppy work for so long, and somebody out there is going to nail you in the end. And all I am saying is you are spending taxpayers’ money, and you owe it to the public to make sure you are doing things by the book,” Mr Henare says.

He says neither Te Puni Kokiri nor minister Parekura Horomia are delivering results for Maori.


A company which wants to use the tides in Kaipara Harbour to generate electricity says its plans could help Maori achieve their aims of cleaning up the harbour and restoring fisheries.

Anthony Bellve, the executive director of Crest Energy, says the company is consulting extensively with tangata whenua.

The councils managing the harbour will hold joint resource consent hearings in July on Crest's plans to place 200 one megawatt turbines on the harbour floor.

Mr Bellve says the turbine bases, which will be spread across 18 square kilometres, will create their own ecosystem.

“The base is 20 by 30 metres, so it’s the size of a reasonably large house, and filled with rock in that way, it could act as a marine reserve In the long run it could benefit the fishing in the harbour. That turnaround could occur within two or three years, based on the experience overseas,” Mr Bellve says.

Crest Energy's plans include encouraging replanting of native bush in catchments emptying into the Kaipara, to reduce sedimentation.


An American hip hop celebrity is making a return visit to Aotearoa to show kids there are alternatives to the gang life.

Tommy the Clown was brought back by West Auckland's Te Whanau O Waipareira to work in schools and streets encouraging young people to encourage them to channel their talents into hip hop.

The Detroit man is credited with introducing the battlezone, where rival crews go head to head to see who has the best moves.

“Happy to be in New Zealand again. We came before, rocked the big show, and now we’re back here, spreading the battlezone so what we’re going to do is we’re going to encourage everybody to form their crew. New Zealand has dancers here that are very skilful. And come together and battle on the dance floor,” he says.

Tommy the Clown will be at schools in West and South Auckland this week before heading to Waikato and Wellington.


Blogger pacificw said...

The Baha'i Faith has been established for almost a century (2012). The fifty years comes from the establishment of an independent National Spiritual Assembly in Aotearoa in 1957. There is evidence of communication between interested persons in New Zealand as early as 1908

5:40 AM  

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