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Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Whanau claims miss out in deadline rush

The author of a book on the Waitangi claim process says whanau claimants are the group most likely to lose out from next Monday's deadline for lodging historical Treaty claims.

The Waitangi Tribunal has received a surge of claims as iwi groups scramble to ensure all their issues will be heard.

But Michael Belgrave, a professor of history at Massey University, says individuals with smaller localised claims will miss out.

"A huge number of whanau issues would never be dealt with anyway. You're only going to deal with representative issues in terms of whanau concerns about relatively small pieces of land," Professor Belgrave says.

He says the current historical settlement process has limits, and the whanau claims may have to be dealt with by a future generation.

Professor Belgrave is giving a public lecture tomorrow on Treaty Settlements: is there an end in sight, in the Neil Waters Theatre on Massey's Albany campus.
 
FILM ARCHIVE EXPECTS HIGH DEMAND FOR TREATY DVD

The New Zealand Film Archive is picking a new multimedia resource on the Treaty of Waitangi to be one of its most requested titles.

The three-DVD set, which is was released last night, is part of the growing On Disk series for loan to schools.

Alex Burton, the education programmes manager, says rather than being a dry project, it turned out to be an exciting compilation with early silent films of Maori life early last century, newsreels from the 1930s and television news footage and documentaries about treaty protests and claims.

He says it's the sort of thing schools are crying out for.

"The treaty over the years has gradually gained increasing importance in the curriculum document and the revised curriculum last year placed it higher still and also inserted it as a social studies learning objective so now every New Zealand student will study it in their year 9, 10 schooling," Mr Burton says.

The DVDs include material from the Film Archives, National Archives and the National Library.
 
 
COMMUNITY CIRCUS GREAT PLACE TO LEARN SKILLS

North Kaipara Maori are embracing the country's first community circus.

Dargaville-based Circus Kumarani started five years ago, and member Claudia Guthrie says Maori now make up a third of the 60 members.

They learn skills like juggling, tightrope walking, clowning, unicyle riding and how to swing poi.

"We offer a variety of circus skills. Some of them get a chance to perform at events we are invited to," Ms Guthrie says.

Circus Kumarani has inspired similar efforts in Kaitaia and Whangarei, and it will be hosting New Zealand's first national community circus convention next month.

COPS GET PASSING GRADE IN SOUTH AUCKLAND SCHOOLS

Cops in schools are getting a passing grade from teachers and pupils in South Auckland schools.

Manager Dexter Trail, from Kahungunu and Rangitane, says the programme began in May at James Cook High School, and 10 schools are now involved, with one officer taking responsibility for two schools.

There's been a few teething problems... but so far the feedback, from the participating police officers as well as the teachers and students, is that things are going well.

"We'll dealing with a whole raft of small criminal element down there but dealing with it at that level, I think we're going to have positive spin-offs in the long run and then who knows ... better society, better community," Mr Trail says.

MAORI PARTY NEEDS TO KNOW HOW TO GAMBLE

A former Labour Maori MP says the Maori Party could be holding the ace card going into this year's election.

John Tamihere, who lost his Tamaki Makaurau seat to Pita Sharples, says the Maori Party has made a solid impact in its first full term in parliament.

He says the major parties are now factoring it into their post-election strategies.

"We all know there is the possibility of the Maori Party choosing who will rule, whether it will be National or whether it will be Labour. it's an amazing position to be in really (for a party) four years old," Mr Tamihere says.

The Maori Party needs to gets its campaign strategy right if it is to best capitalise on its post-election potential.
 
MERETA MITA PATRON OF AOTEAROA INDIGENOUS FILM FESTIVAL

A pioneering Maori film maker is putting her stamp on the first Aotearoa Film Festival, which opened in Hamilton last night.

Patu director Mereta Mita is the patron of the festival, which brings together 10 filmmakers from Aotearoa, the Pacific, Australian and North America.

They are holding screenings and workshops at Te Wananga o Aotearoa campuses in Waitomo, Gisborne, Rotorua and Manukau over the next two weeks.

Organiser Russell Harrison says Hawaii-based Mita set the kaupapa for the venture.

"Bringing someone on board like Mereta to our festival has brought a lot of credibility and has helped us uphold any integrity when it comes to disseminating the films, talking to the filmmakers, and making sure the community gets a really great chance to get a learning experience from it as well," he says.

The Aotearoa Film Festival is a joint venture between the Hawaii based Pacific Islanders in Communication programme, Te Wananga o Aotearoa, the Sundance institute and National Geographic's All Roads Film Project for indigenous filmmakers.

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