Waatea News Update

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Friday, May 16, 2008

Too much traffic on Mauao

Tauranga moana tribes are keen to discuss public access to Mauao.

Parliament this week vested ownerhip in the sacred maunga at Mt Maunganui in Ngai Te Rangi, Ngati Ranginui, Ngati Pukenga and Waitaha.

Mita Ririnui, the Minister of State, says it has taken generations of effort to reach this point.

He says public access needs to be reviewed, because of past damage to the mountain.

“They would never attempt to completely shut off public access but there are issues around the volume of traffic on the maunga- I understand it is up around 2500 to 3000 people a month, and there is only one track up and one track down,” Mr Ririnui says.


The first wave of Tangaroa's kaitiaki are throwing their caps tomorrow.

Graduates of the inaugural National Certificate in Seafood Maori – Customary Fishing Management are meeting at Motakotako Marae in Kawhia tomorrow after two years of work on the programme.

Manihera Forbes, is in his third year as a Pou Takawaenga working with Tainui West Coast Marae representatives on management Plans and submissions.

He says although Maori are competent commercial fisherman there is a lot of commercial pressure on areas.

“There’s a huge amount of recreational fishing, particularly for the charter industry, so Maori really have to have their wits about them to handle these new pressures in this ever-changing world. This certificate goes some way to helping Maori understand what they can do to further enhance their local area and also what they need to do to set up their own management plans so they have a strategic plan for where they want to go in the future,” Mr Forbes says.


The national advisor Maori for the New Zealand is in Invercargill for the re-opening of a marae twice damaged by arson.

Piki Thomas says the rebuilding of Te Tomairangi includes a state of the art sprinkler system

He hopes it will encourage other marae to do likewise, to help control the spread of fire and save priceless taonga.

Mr Thomas says there are on average six marae fires each year in New Zealand, and the whanau from Te Tomairangi have taken a sensible option of installing sprinklers.


It's the right decision.

That's the response of Mita Ririnui, the Minister of State, to a $7 million dollar contribution towards the re-establishment of the whare tupuna Mataatua in Whakatane.

It's the first time a government has agreed to fund such a project.

The Whare was acquired by the Crown in the 1880s.

It was returned in a damaged condition as part of the Ngati Awa treaty settlement in 2005.

Mr Ririnui says it's an important taonga.

“Whakatane o te Manuka Tutahi is the place where the Mataatua canoe originally arrived so the house was built there in remembrance of that but certain events happened and it was removed from their repossession and they’re wishing to reinstate it and that is now possible to the tune of $7 million,” Mr Ririnui says.

Ngati Awa will receive $2 million this year and $5 million next year to re-erect Mataatua as the centrepiece of a new tribal complex.


The MP for Tamaki Makauru is critical of a restructuring at Auckland museum which has forced the departure of the Maori curator.

The upheaval has led to several iwi groups asking how they can take back their taonga if they don't trust the museum to care for it.

Pita Sharples says the restructuring has been extremely badly handled, without proper consultation.

“We've just received a notice and some dates they’d like to consult with me about it in the future. Now, for heavens sake, they made the sackings now. Why dolt they consult first and get the views of everyone who relate to those taonga and things in there first before they make the move to cut down the staff and which staff to cut down,” Dr Sharples says.


Fisheries minister Jim Anderton has got the thumbs up from Great Barrier Island Maori for vetoing a marine reserve.

Martin Cleave from Ngati Wai says the Conservation Department's proposal to lock off almost 500 square kilometres around Aotea would have been a blow to the island's residents.

He says Maori and non-Maori have always gathered their kaimoana from the area.

“In Aotea you’ve got prevailing winds, you’ve got westerlies. If you’ve got westerlies, you gather on the east. If you’ve got easterlies, you gather on the west. So when it’s westerly, and there’s a marine reserve on the east, we can’t eat. If you take that away, we starve. It’s that simple,” Mr Cleave says.


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