Waatea News Update

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

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Monday, July 27, 2009

Whanau ties keep everything ka pai

A new survey has found Maori are the happiest people in New Zealand.

UMR Research surveyed 15,000 New Zealanders and found over 31 percent of Maori expressed high levels of happiness compared to New Zealand Europeans at 29.5 percent, Pacific peoples at 25.9 percent and Asians at 18.1 percent.

UMR Research chief executive Tim Grafton says they found clear reasons behind Maori happiness, stemming from strong whanau ties.

He says the research showed wealth does not equal happiness not only among Maori but New Zealanders generally.


Fluent speakers of te reo MAori are being challenged to complain if they hear the language mispronounced on televisoIn.

Veteran Maori broadcaster Henare Kingi, who has been an on air radio host at Wellington's Te Upoko O Te Ika for over 20 years, says the overall delivery of te reo Maori by television presenters needs improvement.

He says Maori speakers, upset at sloppy use of te reo on TV, should make a point of complaining to the broadcasters and not expect others to police the quality of te reo on New Zealand television channels.

Mr Kingi says Wellington kaumatua want Maori language week extended to a month.


A new video aimed at protecting rangatahi from the risks of putting sensitive information online has been translated into Te Reo Maori.

The Privacy Commission launched Whakaarotia katahi ka tuku atu ai today, to help stem the rising number of teenagers who posted personal information about themselves on publicly available web page and mobile phone chat rooms.

Privacy commissioner Marie Shroff says Maori rangatahi were a target audience.

“Rangatahi are the biggest users of social networking, Bebo, Facebook, they’re into YouTube which only started in 2005 and of course texting is big. In each of those situations young people can upload information they later very much regret sharing with other people,” Ms Shroff says.

The video, which includes homegrown music by Hikoikoi, was to help celebrate Maori Language Week.


A Maori Language Commissioner says apathy will be the death of the Maori language unless the current generation does something about it.

Speaking as part of Maori Language Week, Hana O'Regan says there are about 5000 languages spoken in the world and it is estimated that in 100 years there will be just 1000 of them left.

“The world is changing. Languages internationally are more endangered than mammals. Languages are going at the rate of 47 percent of the world’s languages are near extinction,” Ms O'Regan says.

There is no reason to presume Maori will be among the survivors.

She says while New Zealand prides itself on the adoption of Maori among mainstream media and the like the reality is that 75 percent of Maori don't speak the language and it is in danger of dying out.


The potential culling of polytechnic governing councils could see an exodus by Maori students from tertiary education, says the Maori Students Association.

A leaked memo written by the Institutes of Technology and Polytechnics New Zealand following meetings with Tertiary Minister Anne Tolley has revealed plans to slash all institute of technology and polytechnic governance structures from up to 20 seats down to 8 members.

Nga Tauira president Victor Manawatu says this would potentially remove any Maori representation and if Maori have no voice at governance level, then the ability for Maori to participate successfully is jeapardised.

“Universities now are seen as elitists, they’re seen as very white. We’re based on a Westminster model and it doesn’t really cater for our needs. By having a voice within council, by having a voice on faculty we can direct them and say ‘this doesn’t really work for our people, perhaps we should look at another strategy or solution to see our people succeed in the institution,” Mr Manawatu says.

He says the only way to safely ensure equity on the councils is to allocate a Maori seat.


The push is on to get more Manukau based Maori and Polynesians to take up Tai Chi, to help with flexibility and improve fitness.

Koia Teinakore teaches the ancient oriental exercise techniques each Tuesday morning at Te Whare Awhina, one of three community houses in the Manurewa area of South Auckland.

Mr Teinakore says the gentle pace of the movements appeal to older Maori and Polynesian people, and communities are now realising how important it is that they stay active.

“We involve total hauora in terms of the social well being. Of course they get that when they meet new people and come out of their homes again. We have the emotional well being, the physical well being, and of course the spiritual side,” Mr Teinakore says.

He’s seen the difference Tai Chi has made for Maori, especially those who have had arthritic conditions or are struggling with weight issues.


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