Waatea News Update

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Monday, October 29, 2007

Call for Horomia to resign over raids

The Maori Party has called for the resignation of the Minister of Maori Affairs over his failure to take action on police terrorism raids.

The raids which led to the arrests of 17 people on firearms charges dominated the party’s annual conference in Hawkes Bay over the weekend.

Co leader Tariana Turia says all Maori feel threatened by the police actions, especially Tuhoe of the Eastern Bay of Plenty.

“We have had a whole iwi around Ruatoki, around the Urewera, who have been under siege by the police. Now, I’m sure if this happened up in Ngati Porou, the minister would by now have done something about it,” Mrs Turia says.

She says Parekura Horomia is only too keen to take the credit when maori do positive things, but runs away when things get tough.


Maori in the creative arts have a new source of advice on how to protect intellectual property and matauranga Maori.

It's Te Mana Taumaru Maatauranga, a publication from the Ministry of Economic Development.

Judith Tizard, the associate minister of commerce, says commercialisation of Maori imagery or words by overseas advertising agencies, fashion labels and even security firms has highlighted the complexity of the issue.

The guide covers trademarks and patents, performers and artists intellectual property rights and the protection of traditional knowledge.

“What we're hoping is this intellectual property guide for Maori will be used iin businesses and in school and in communities and artists’ groups that say okay, are we looking after ourselves and are we sure that we are respecting other people as we do work that may be based on their work,” Ms Tizard says.


An award winning director would like to see more co-ordination of Maori filmmakers doing the rounds of festivals with their wares.

Tearepa Kahi is riding high with Taua, a short film about a boy who shows compassion to an enemy warrior during a raid.

It's just been judged best short film at National Geographic magazine's All Roads indigenous and minority film festival un Washington DC, and it's also booked for screenings at the Sundance and Berlin film festivals early next year.

Mr Kahi says it can be a lonely road promoting films, and it would be good if emerging artists can benefit from the experience of celebrated filmmakers like Taika Waititi and Mike Jonathan.

“You know you've got a small core of Maori filmmakers, but then there’s all those ones on the periphery as well. There’s a national body, but there’s nothing too formal keeping everyone together. As an artist you’re usually stuck in your room, going hard, going for gold really,” Mr Kahi says.


The Maori Party says Parekura Horomia is failing in his duty to protect Maori.

Co Leader Tariana Turia says the police anti terrorism raids are seen by Maori as an attempt to suppress legitimate debate on New Zealand’s bicultural relationships.

She says in his unquestioning support for the police, the Minister of Maori affairs has shown he's out of touch with Maori opinion, and failing Maori people.

“It's one thing for the minister to take all the kudos for all the good things that happen amongst our people, but he also has an absolute responsibility to also provide some protection for our people as well,” Mrs Turia says.

She says Parekura Horomia should resign over his poor performance.


The Maori community may need to go smokefree marae by marae.

That's the view of Mark Peck, the director of the Smokefree Coalition.

He says the decision by the government superannuation fund to stop investing in tobacco companies shows how public attitudes are changing, but there are still challenges with the disproportionately high number of Maori smokers.

He says the future is in the community's own hands.

“Iwi by iwi, marae by marae, people need to sit down and say our kaupapa is no smoking, no tobacco, and if you’re given the kawa for a marae, you respect that. If a marae goes smokefree, that’s exactly what it means. I think it’s in the hands of Maori to start doing something about it,” Mr Peck says.

He's backing the push by Taitokerau MP Hone Harawira to ban the sale of all tobacco products.


The Tamaki brothers are working on a new way to sell New Zealand as a tourism destination.

The Rotorua-based pair are planning a new development in Manukau next to the Telstra Clear Pacific Events Centre.

Mike Tamaki says it will focus on the great migration from Hawaiiki.

The Rotorua will continue to focus the emergence of separate iwi within Aotearoa and their individual stories, while the new Christchurch village takes the story from colonial times to present day.

He says the Tamaki Heritage Village in Christchurch is proving the shift from the traditional hongi, haka and hangi format is popular with tourists and locals alike.

“The amount of visitors that we have been taking through in the last 16 weeks have been 50 percent of local Cantabrian people and they’re coming out the other end really loving the whole story, because this is a prototype down here in Christchurch of what we’re going to do in Manukau and how we are making changes happen in Rotorua,” Mr Tamaki says.

The Manukau venture, which is due to open in 2010, will be part of an art, tourism, hotel and business complex.


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