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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Friday, July 03, 2009

Maori in city showcased

Auckland's ASB Showgrounds echoed this morning to the sound of the karanga as Ngati Whatua elders welcomed visitors to Atamira, a showcase of Maori in the city.

More than 1000 people turned out for the first day of the three day event which showcases Maori innovation in the arts and business.

Organisers aim to put a Maori face to the country’s biggest city.

Tonight there is a hui on how Maori can position themselves to benefit from the influx of visitors to the 2011 rugby world cup, and tomorrow there’s a science and technology innovation summit.

The draw for most vsitors is the music, with featured acts including Herbs Unplugged, Nesian Mystic, Trinity Roots, Whirimako Black and Moana Maniapoto’s Tribe on its last appearance before it heads off next week for a rainforest festival in Borneo.

Stallholders say it’s important rangatahi see the range of fields Maori are active in, and many government agencies are using the TPK-sponsored event to reach out to the Maori community.


Maori with a point to make about the Auckland super city will get their chance at next week.

A special subcommittee of the Auckland Governance Legislation select committee will sit at Orakei marae on Wednesday, Te Puea Marae in Mangere on Thursday and Hoani Waititi in the west on Friday.
Subcommittee chair Tau Henare says it's a first for Parliament, and he's trying to reach more than the two or three hundred Maori who have lodged written submissions so far.

“It just gives Maori a chance to be comfortable in their surroundings. We are going to hear submissions, those who have written in to us, in the morning, and then in the afternoon period we will open it up to a sort of open forum so we’re hopeful those who want to moan about the Auckland super city idea or those who want to say it’s a good idea can come along and give us their view,” Mr Henare says.

Some Maori may also make submissions to the main select committee, which is holding hearings at the Barrycourt Motel in Parnell all week from 9am to 9pm.


The Warriors are being urged to stick with the Stacey Jones-Lance Hohaia combo at half.

Sports commentator Ken Laban says the Auckland-based rugby league franchise has chopped around its line-up so much this year the players must be getting dizzy.

The Warriors must beat the Broncos in Brisbane tonight to stay in with a chance of reaching the final eight.

Mr Laban says while some critics believe Hohaia is more potent coming off the bench, a better indicator is the success Queensland coach Mel Meninga has had by persevering with the inside back combination of Johnathan Thurston and Darren Lockyer, giving them enough games together to develop an understanding.


Hosts Ngati Tuwharetoa are expecting more than 500 people to Hirangi Marae tomorrow to mark the largest ever treaty settlement.

Land under the Crown's central North Island forests has been handed to eight iwi, and with it comes more than $200 million dollars in cash, which is the rent that has accumulated in the Crown Forest Rental Trust over the past 20 years.

Ten percent of the forest assets have been held back for iwi who did not join the Treelord collective.

Trust chair Sir Graham Latimer says it's an outcome he could only hope for when his New Zealand Maori Council went to court 20 years ago to stop the sale of state forests.

“Well it was a hope at that stage but it wasn’t a fact. It’s a mighty sum of money. To be able to bring ourselves up to a level and compete in the business world, you’ve got to have the waywithall to go with it,” Sir Graham says.

Even with $200 million taken from its putea the Crown Forest Rental trust has enough money left to keep funding claimant research until the end of the historical claim process, but it will need to work on tighter budgets in future.


Meanwhile, a Te Arawa negotiator says CNI tribes are keen to take a major role in the region's economy.

Willie Te Aho says the iwi don't want to just be landlords of the 176 thousand hectares under the forests.

IN: We want to look at how we can add vale to our wood before it goes offshore so there’s on the ground forestry jobs, processing, marketing opportunities. Then there’s the geothermal possibilities under our land,” Mr te Aho says.

The settlement will also give the iwi capital to play a role in infrastructure investment.


The only wharenui in England is being restored and enlarged to serve as the centre of cultural activity for Maori based in the United Kingdom.

Hinemihi stands in Clandon Park, Surrey, where it was brought by a former governor general soon after it was dug out from under the ashes of the 1886 Mount Tarawera eruption.

Jim Schuster, a Maori heritage advisor for the Historic Places Trust and a great grandson of Tene Waitere, one of Hinemihi's carvers, says National Trust conservation architects are drawing up the plans for the restoration, and totara for a new ridgepole has been sent over.

He says the project follows a long debate in British heritage circles about the future role of the house.

“They wanted Hinemihi to be the centre for Maori cultural activities for UK-based Maori. Now that’s in the mission statement they’re all behind the project. It took a while to convince them of that and now they’re behind the project and they realise I think there’s lots of Maori people living in the UK and they find it’s their way of reconnecting with home,” Mr Schuster says.

Ngati Hinemihi weavers will travel to England to work on the tukutuku panels with members of London's Ngati Ranana and other UK-based Maori who want to learn the art.


Blogger Mean Maori said...

Great post! Its always good to catch up with whats happening with our Maori around the country. Would have been good to make the ASB showgrounds. I will subscribe to keep up to date with your posts.
Kia Ora


12:54 AM  

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