Waatea News Update

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Poananga stands up for women

One of the contenders to stand for the Maori Party in Ikaroa Rawhiti says she'll play second fiddle to no man.

Atareta Poananga broke off her 12-year relationship with broadcaster Derek Fox last month when he told her he was also chasing the nomination.

They're the two front-runners in the five-strong field. Mr Fox missed out by about 750 votes in 1999, and Ms Poananga was 2000 voted behind Labour's Parekura Horomia last election.

She says her loyalty to women is stronger than to her former partner.

“We're second class citizens in the political arena, whether it be in local government or in Parliament, and I’ve been one of the few Maori womenthat have been able to break that hold, the male preserve of politics. We do need that balance in Parliament of mana wahine and mana tane working together, because if we don’t have that, we have an imbalance in the aspirations and needs of our people,” Ms Poananga says.

JOINT VENTURE TO GROW SOUNDS SALMON

Marlborough Maori are set to cash in on the high profile of Omega-3.

Te Atiawa Manuwhenua Ki Te Tau Ihu Trust has entered a partnership with King Salmon to open a $4 million farm at Clay Point in Tory Channel.

Jane de Freu says the demand for salmon is increasing a more people pursue the health benefits of eating the oily fish.

She says the iwi has been looking for the best use for the marine farm since it won the space in the early 1990s.

“We tested it with one mussel line, and it certainly didn’t prove to be productive for mussels so we then looked at what the next option was, and that’s how the King Salmon partnership developed,” Ms de Freu says.

The Clay Point sea farm will create 32 new jobs and revenue of $25 million at current salmon prices.

POUNAMU BLACK MARKET TACKLED BELATEDLY

A South Westland hapu is cracking down on the black market trade of pounamu.

David Saxton and his son Morgan were last week jailed for stealing $800 thousand of South Westland greenstone from the remote Cascade Plateau.

Under a law passed as part of the Ngai Tahu settlement, all pounamu belongs to the iwi.

Tui Cadigan, the chair of Te Runanga o Makaawhio, says the iwi is still recovering from the cultural, spiritual and economic damage of the theft.

She says the Saxton's use of helicopters was a wake up call for the iwi, who were used to the traditional way of taking out only what they could carry.

“We were not I guess on the ball enough when helicopters became quite prolific in south Westland to realise the potential of what could happen to us, so it has been a wake up call for Makaawhio as well as Ngai Tahu and I think that in the wake of that we’ve really made a commitment to tighten up the security around the way in which we function,” Ms Cadigan says.

Anyone found with illegal pounamu could be prosecuted.

TAMIHERE WORK WITH FORESHORE LAW

One of the architects of the Foreshore and Seabed Act believes critics of deals done under the act may end up with egg on their faces.

Former Labour MP John Tamihere is negotiating a foreshore deal for his Hauraki iwi in the wake of Ngati Porou's agreement in principle this month.

He says it's taken time for the Crown and Maori to come to terms with the Act he voted for back in 2004, but a lot of iwi are now in similar talks.

He says critics like the Maori Party haven't put up credible alternatives.

“Even if a court had awarded common law customary rights, what would they have looked like and how would they have worked? So what we have now is a process in place and it’s very interesting if it does work out to achieve what we’d always wanted, so a few people have egg on their face I reckon,” Mr Tamihere says.

If the process fails, then people can say there were ripped off.

COSTS NEEDED FOR FOLLY OF A CASE

The administrator of an indebted Northland Maori land incorporation says Dover Samuels needs to pay for flogging a dead horse.

Matauri X is seeking $50,000 in legal costs against the Labour list MP.

Mr Samuels tried to exclude a block previously owned by his family from a subdivision the incorporation is doing to pay off a $6 million debt.

The Maori Land Court ruled against him, saying he had the same rights and obligations as other shareholders.

Kevin Gillespie says the case should never have gone to trial, as the likely outcome was clear from an early stage.

“The injunction judgment which came up before the substantive hearing gave an indication the court was going to be rather unwilling to find in his favour. It was land that had been acquired by his step-father. It wasn’t ancestral land, and that put it in a bit of a different category,”
Mr Gillespie says.

The coastal subdivision is about halfway towards breaking even.

OBESITY BYPRODUCT OF COLONISATION

A Maori academic says just banning television advertising for unhealthy food would have little effect on the health of Maori.

A poll on behalf of the Chronic Disease Prevention Peak Group found 82 percent support among caregivers for banning junk food ads aimed at children.

Leonie Pihama, the director of the International Research Institute for Maori and Indigenous Education at Auckland University, says Maori need to take a wider view of the problem.

She says problems like obesity aren't new.

“Obesity is an outcome of colonisation and it’s an issue that has been with us for quite a long time in terms of the way in which our food source has been changed so we have to have a wider take on it,” Dr Pihama says.

Maori need to consider going back to growing or collecting their own food.

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