Waatea News Update

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Friday, November 16, 2007

Ngati Porou, Tainui join fish protest

More iwi have joined in a protest over a proposal to give the minister of fisheries the unchallengable power to cut fisheries quotas.

Tainui and Ngati Porou today joined 18 other iwi and Maori fishing groups opposing an amendment to the Fisheries Act which is now before Parliament.

They see the change as another attempt to impose the shared fisheries regime, which would have commercial quotas for inshore species like snapper and paua cut to leave more for recreational users.

But Api Mahuika, the chair of the East Coast Ngati Porou runanga, says the change will disadvantage Maori.

“We are the major fishing company and we are the major fishers in this country and every time there is a move such as this, it impacts largely on us. In terms of the shared fishery, we are the ones that suffer, because we are the ones that pay, we are the ones that can be sued,” Mr Mahuika says.

He says the Minister, Jim Anderton, is behaving in a dictatorial fashion.

A spokesperson for the Minister says the issue is still under consideration.

PARIHAKA MARKS CENTENARY OF DEATH OF PROPHET

On Sunday, Parihaka will mark the 100 years since the death of one of the main prophets associated with the Taranaki settlement, Te Whiti o Rongomai.

Organiser Te Miringa Hohaia says the commemoration is combined with the iwi's annual meeting and with the monthly Ra day, a gathering instigated during the 1860s as a response to the Waitara war.

Two houses in Parihaka are associated with Te Whiti - Te Niho o Te Atiawa and Te Paepae o te Raukura, which burned down in 1960.

Mr Hohaia says a feast will be held over the foundation of Raukura to bring the community together.

“It's an indication too that one day we are going to stand that house back up again so holding the hakari there on Sunday is an important thing for us because since the house burnt down, there has never been a gathering held there,” Mr Hohaia says.

He says the hakari there will give whanau an opportunity to reflect on the legacy of peace left by Te Whiti.

MAORI TEAM NEEDED IN WORLD CUP

A former Silver Fern wants a Maori team to be part of the next netball world cup.

Noelene Taurua, who now coaches the Waikato Bay of Plenty Magic, says the team would be competitive - judging by performances at this week's world championships in West Auckland, where the Cook Islands and Samoa made the top eight.

Ms Taurua says the event needs more competitive teams.

“There's a definite gap between the top four and everybody else so they’ve got to look at the format. Based on the talent I’ve seen around the countryside and what we have in the back pocket, definitely in the top eight position,” Ms Taurua says.

SHAPLES LOOKS AT INDIGEBOUS INPUT INTO UN LOBBY

Maori Party co-leader Pita Sharples is off to Geneva this weekend to discuss how indigenous people could be represented in a proposed United Nations parliamentary assembly.

The hui has been called by the Committee for a Democratic UN, a non-governmental organisation registered in Germany.

Dr Sharples says the assembly the committee is advocating would give ordinary people a say in world affairs.

The UN's business is currently done by appointed officials and diplomats, with country leaders and foreign ministers turning up occasionally to speak at the General Assembly.

“I'm going from the point of view of indigenous people to see if the indigenous peoples of the world can have a slot in that parliament so their views of minority groups and indigenous minority groups can be heard on a world stage,” Dr Sharples says.

About 50 indigenous leaders are expected at the meeting.

DRUG SCOURGE NEEDS COMMUNITY RESPONSE

Maori communities could come out of the P epidemic stronger if they take a community approach to the problem.

That's the view of social activist Dennis O'Reilly, who is part of a trust working to persuade Black Power and Mongrel Mob gangs to stop their involvement in the sale and use of methamphetamine.

He says it's been an unpopular message, but as communities see the damage the drug is doing they are responding.

He says making war on drugs and trying to dissuade people hasn't worked, so it's time to embrace people and persuade them of the alternatives.

“When someone's high on a substance like meth, it ain’t a hell of a lot of use talking to them about that particular thing, you’re better to focus on that whanau because they’re the ones that are gong to be hurting, and how are they going to be painting a better future, it’s all about creating a future narrative, about what their life is going to look like in the future, and then helping them achieve that. And as the brother or sister who is using comes to their senses, you help them stop using,” Mr O'Reilly says.

He was reporting in his programme to this week's Community Action on Youth and Drugs hui at Victoria University.

KAUHUKIWA TRIES THE SUPERHERO TREATMENT

Robyn Kahukiwa want to take her latest work off the canvas.

Superheroes for My Mokopuna opened at Auckland's Warwick Henderson Gallery this week.

The paintings were inspired by the superhero action toys and comics.

The Ngati Kahungunu artist says rather than using American heroes, she'd like to see the imaginations of tamariki inspired by the Maori and Polynesian figures of her work.

She's looking for backers to take the idea further.

“I wasn't having any luck getting the genre done, like the animated cartoons and the dolls and all that stuff, because I’ve just never been able to find anyone who’s invested in it. I mean I don’t make enough money to do anything so I’ve just got the ideas and everyone in Aotearoa could be inspired by these superheroes,” Ms Kahukiwa says.

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