Waatea News Update

News from Waatea 603 AM, Urban Maori radio, first with Maori news

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Friday, November 30, 2007

British eyed for Treaty breaches

An Auckland historian wants to hold the British Crown accountable for breaches of the Treaty of Waitangi.

Paul Moon from AUT University has been asked by two hapu to investigate whether the British government's signature on the treaty is enforceable.

He's made inquiries of the British foreign and commonwealth office, bit so far he's been fobbed off by officials.

Professor Moon says the colonial government in New Zealand assumed the role of the Crown without consent from Maori.

“If they want to move away and make the New Zealand government the crown, make the New Zealand government the other party, if there’s Maori consent for that, fine but to date no one’s shown me a document in which the chiefs or the descendants of chiefs have signed which says that we’re happy with make the New Zealand government being the Crown, so as it stands in international law, either the treaty is between Maori and the British Crown or the treaty is invalid,” Dr Moon says.

He says there could be billions of pounds in compensation at stake.

PUSH ON FOR MAORI FIREFIGHTERS

The push is on for more Maori firefighters.

The Fire Service is holding open days in main centres tomorrow to bolster ranks in stations throughout the country.

Peter Wilding, the national recruitment manager, says staff need to reflect the communities they serve.

Ten percent of firefighters in New Zealand are Maori.

“That's really useful because they are able to engage with Maori speaking groups, with the local community, We have better understanding of the right protocols and customers, and we have a lot better reception from the public of the safety messages we want to communicate,” Mr Wilding says.

MAORI TELEVISION FIRES AGONY AUNTS

Maoridom's favourite Aunties are out of a job.

Maori Television is scrapping its bilingual Ask your Auntie show, in which host Ella Henry and her other agony aunts offer advice on life, relationships, work and health.

Kim Muriwai from Greenstone Productions says the word has come down that the prime time slot is needed for shows in te reo Maori.

“It's sort of a little hard to understand the rationale we’ve been given behind the decision, but I think the greatest disappointment is that we weren’t given the opportunity to say goodbye and than you to all our followers,” Ms Muriwai says.

While it's the end of their run on Maori Television, the Aunties whanau is talking to other networks.

SHARPLES SYMPATHETIC TO MOON VIEW

The co-leader of the Maori Party is backing calls for an investigation into the status of the Treaty of Waitangi in international law.

Paul Moon, a lecturer at AUT University, has asked the British foreign and commonwealth office for proof that Maori consented to the British government transferring responsibility for the treaty to the New Zealand settler government.

Pita Sharples says there could be something in Dr Moon's research.

“Well I think he’s got a point. There are many Maori who have said to me we should sue the Queen. What they mean was England hasn’t carried out its obligations which were signed on behalf of Queen Victoria, so I guess he really does have a point, and that might be an avenue worth exploring,” Dr Sharples says.

KEY SLAMS SETTLEMENT SPEED

National's leader says the slow pace of treaty settlements is slowing Maori development.

John Key says he's impressed by the financial results coming in form post-settlement iwi like Tainui and Ngai Tahu.

But rising land values and inflation are cutting the potential value of settlements for those still in the queue.

“Every day that goes by with Labour sitting on its hands and not getting those financial resources in the hands of those who deserve them and who they rightly belong to is another day they are put further behind,” Mr Key says.

BUT HOROMIA SAYS DURABILITY THE ISSUE

But the Minister of Maori Affairs is defending the pace of treaty settlements.

Parekura Horoimia says the Government wants to be sure settlements are durable.

“We've got a whole lot of the settlements a lot closer than they’ve ever been, even from the beginning of the settlement process. Tainui, the Tenths Trust, Te Roroa, the Top of the Sounds the other day, are all at different stages and some are very close to finality,” Mr Horomia says.

BUSINESS SCHOOL BOOSTS DOCTORAL STAFFERS

New Zealand's largest business school has doubled the number of Maori PhDs on its staff.

Annemarie Gillies, the director of Te Au Rangahau Maori business research centre at Massey University, and research associate Marianne Tremaine received their doctorates today.

Another research associate, Shirley Barnett, will collect her scroll in May.

Co-worker Farah Palmer says with six PhDs on staff, Te Au Rangahau is putting a Maori face on business.

She says the trio had made a huge contribution.

“Whenever there's any visitors or guests to the university, it’s often the Maori women that are their to look after them and make them feel welcome, so in many ways they’ve got lots of other things that they’re responsible for and then they’ve got their own whanau they’re responsible for so the fact that they’ve managed to achieve PhDs is really great,” Dr Palmer says.

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