Waatea News Update

News from Waatea 603 AM, Urban Maori radio, first with Maori news

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Precedent set for birding rights strips

Up to 100 Ngai Tahu families could be stripped of their mutton birding rights as descendants of a small group of rangatira use the courts to bar access to a group of southern islands.

The group, led by Lowana Clearwater, says only direct descendants of the 15 rangatira named in the 1864 Rakiura Deed of Cession should be allowed to collect mutton birds from 18 islands excluded from the sale of Stewart Island.

Mrs Clearwater successfully challenged a succession which would have confirmed the right of Invercargill man Tommy Ashwell continue birding on Taukihepa, where he has built a house.

Mr Ashwell says the precedent will be used against other families whose rights stem from Maori Land Court decisions early last century.

“They've got me off and that’s the precedent and now they’re going to try to get the other 100 families off. That’s what’s going around you know,” Mr Ashwell says.

He says the 15 rangatira signed on behalf of the whole tribe, not to claim rights only for their own children and grandchildren.

Lowana Clearwater refused to comment.


A member of the Hui Taumata task force says Maori trusts and Maori entrepreneurs need to start working together.

Mavis Mullins is a director of Hawkes Bay shearing contractors Paewai Mullins, as well as chairing Te Huarahi Tika Trust, which is working to create a third mobile phone network using spectrum set aside for Maori.

She says last week's Maori jobs summit identified opportunities for Maori to use their assets to stimulate economic activity during the current recession.

But that means changing the way people work.

“You know we have entrepreneurs who have got the great ideas and the energy, and then we have some of our primary sector guys and iwi tribal assets who are pretty well cashed up, and somehow we have got to get those linkages working better,” Mrs Mullins says.

Maori are likely to again be hit hard by the recession as they were in the late 1980s, but because they know it's coming they might be able to soften its effects.


Protest leader turned politician Hone Harawira says this week he'll be celebrating the fact Waitangi Day isn't just another holiday.

The Tai Tokerau MP says that's because of the years in which the annual treaty commemoration in the Bay of Islands was turned into a platform for Maori grievances to be aired.

He's still not comfortable with the idea of the national day being a celebration.

“Well it's kind of difficult to celebrate being second class citizens in your own land where you die more that everybody else, you get a worse education than everybody else, you are the last ones hired and the first ones fired when it comes to jobs, all that sort of carry on,” Mr Harawira says.

At Te Tii Marae in Waitangi today, Ngapuhi will hold its annual kawe mate or memory of those who have died during the year.

Later in the afternoon they will welcome the leading woman in the Rarotongan royal line, the Pa Ariki.


Te Wananga o Aotearoa has taken over the Papatoa forestry training course from Tairawhiti Polytechnic.

It marks a return to trade training, which the wananga was forced out of while it was under Crown management.

Chief executive Bentham Ohia says the certificate in cable logging will be offered to about 450 students at 18 campuses around the country.

He says the wananga was asked to take over the programme by the Tertiary Education Commission and Tairawhiti Polytechnic, which wanted to concentrate its resources on serving the East Coast region.

“The actual Papatoa programme comes with 10 years of experience under great leadership and the opportunity was to bring that leadership and experience together with the wananga’s infrastructure and its kaupapa to looking at ways to maintain, enhance and advance Papatoa as a programme moving forward,” Mr Ohia says.

Te Wananga o Aotearoa has approval from the Tertiary Education Commission to increase student numbers this year by 1500 to 21,000.


The new producer of Te Karere says he wouldn't have taken on the mahi if TVNZ wasn't totally committed to the Maori news programme.

Yesterday Te Karere celebrated 25 years since its first two and a half minute broadcast.

Shane Taurima says the show's new set, music and graphics makes it more in line with the state broadcaster's other news and current affairs shows.

“There's a huge commitment to the show. Te Karere is now very much integrated with the general newsroom if you like with all the other news programmes and that’s a big priority for me, but also keeping the authenticity that’s been worked on and created over the past 25 years,” he says.

Mr Taurima, stepping off the screen to produce Te Karere after several years fronting Sunday current affairs show Marae.


The man behind a Waitangi Tribunal claim over the loss of Maori traditional games says New Zealand sports administrators are missing an opportunity to get Maori children excited about sport.

Harko Brown, who now teaches at Moerewa Primary after many years at Kerikeri High School, says only a few of the 100 traditional games recorded by anthropologist Elsdon Best remain.

He says one of those games, a contact sport called kiorahi, has been picked up by American schools ... but ignored here.

“Their curriculum directive came over in early 2005. They heard about kiorahi and the benefits you have to physical health and activity. Six months later they had it introduced into 31,000 schools. That’s 7 million primary school children who are into kiorahi within six months,” he says.

As well as his Waitangi Tribunal claim, Harko Brown is doing a masters thesis on inhibitors to Maori sports in education.


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