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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Friday, April 18, 2008

Te Aute puts lease claim

Prominent old boys from Te Aute College are demanding action on the Maori boarding school's Glasgow leases.

A group including former Waitangi Tribunal chairperson Eddie Durie and Maori Party co-leader Pita Sharples met today with Treaty Negotiations Minister Michael Cullen to explain how land gifted for the school's upkeep was leased out by the Crown early last century for peppercorn rentals.

Under the Glasgow system of perpetual leases, the valuable farmland is leased for about 5 percent of unimproved value, with rents reviewed every 21 years.

Dr Sharples says it's a continuing injustice.

“The school is broke and as many boarding schools are, finding it really hard to keep going, and it’s a shame that we own so much land there, and while the farmers are getting rich off that land, the school is suffering and could close,” Dr Sharples says.

Te Aute has lodged a claim with the Waitangi Tribunal, but it's also seeking direct negotiations.


Donna Awatere Huata says a Waitangi Tribunal claim could be the way to force the Crown to deliver equity in Maori education.

The former ACT MP says Maori education is in meltdown, with more than half of Maori boys leaving school without qualifications.

She says the solutions discussed this week at the Waipareira education summit are well known in academic circles, but they're not being acted on.

“The fact that all this research is not being implemented by teachers in schools, not being addressed by principals, not being addressed by Ministry of Education, I think that it’s criminal what is being done to snuff out the potential of Maori boys,” Mrs Awatere-Huata says.

She says problems around literacy could be turned around within five years if the government took action.


It's his first solo show, but Tairawhiti sculptor Simon Lardelli has tackled a big subject.

Iwi, which opened today at the Tairawhiti Museum in Gisborne, is based on what he saw last year in Turkey, accompanying his uncle Derek on a research trip to the Gallipoli battlefields.

The Waiariki-trained carver, who has quit his teaching job at Toihoukura to concentrate full time on his art, hopes he has conveyed the feeling of the place.

“You read a lot about the Anzacs and the Maori Battalion through books and the media as well but trying to experience it for yourself, the best place is in Turkey itself of in Gallipoli, visiting the Anzac cove and the burial sites and going to the museum and seeing the remains,” says Mr Llardelli, from Ngati Porou and Rongowhakaata.


A big turnout from Tuwharetoa and Te Arawa was on hand today as the ground was broken for a new geothermal power station near Taupo.

Nga Awa Purua is a joint venture between Tauhara North No.2 Trust and Mighty River Power, and the 132 megawatt station will be built by Japanese company Sumitomo.

Aroha Campbell, Tauhara's executive officer, says it's a big step up from the existing 34 megawatt station, where the landowners just have a licensing deal.

“We've had 10 years of monitoring and building our Relationship with Mighty River Power and monitoring the reservoir as to how it reacts to certain climate changes and so we were confident enough to take the next step which is the construction of this power station,” Ms Campbell says.

Once the station is commission in 2010, Tauhara North can expect seven-figure annual returns from license fees and dividends.


Waikato iwi are getting behind this weekend's V8 Supercar Championships in Hamilton.

Rally driver Marty Rostenberg, who bills himself the fastest Maori in Motorsport, says while there's no Maori in the top international field, they're a big presence behind the scenes.

“Obviously being in Hamilton in the heart of Tainui country, there’s kapa haka parties, lots of powhiris and really the opportunity to demonstate our local culture to the overseas guests as well,” Mr Rostenburg says.

Two hundred thousand visitors are expecting to invade the Waikato to see the V8's this weekend.


There's some unique challenges for a group building palisades around the old papakainga site at Okaahu Bay on Auckland's waterfront.

A television production company is filming the project this weekend as part of a new community arts show.

Ngarimu Blair, the heritage and resource manager for Ngati Whatua Ki Orakei, says the puriri, manuka and kanuka fence is designed to be transportable, so it can comply with heritage restrictions.

“Historic Places
Trust won’t let you dig a hole for anything so we’re trying to be clever in a way to design it so we can pin it into place in sections so perhaps one day people will drive along Mt Eden Rd and look up at the pa there and might see some of the palisades reconstructed to give a sense of what the place may have looked like at one time,” Mr Blair says.

The palisades will be available for use by other community groups.


Anonymous Amber said...

that sucks cause there have been so many great leaders that have been to that school back in there day for example Apirana Ngata went to that school at the age of 10 and he became such a great historian plus he became travelling secretary and organiser for the young Maori party he even made the school slogan up. man that has got to suck to have a great school like that to go down the drain because of money problems and whitout Apirana going to Te Aute College the Maori people might not even had an equal oppurtinity with other people.THE WHOLE COMMUNITY SHOULD HELP

6:45 PM  

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