Waatea News Update

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Aotearoa Fisheries catches Wellington shops

Pan-Maori company Aotearoa Fisheries is buying Ngai Tahu's Wellington-based Pacific Catch retail and fish processing operation.

Ngai Tahu has already sold its Auckland and Christchurch Pacific Catch stores to concentrate its fishing activities on quota leasing, paua, lobster and Bluff oysters.

AFL chief executive Jeremy Fleming says the purchase includes outlets in the Porirua and Wellington city Moore Wilson stores, as well as a roadside stall at Paekakariki.

He says AFL already runs retail outlets in Auckland and Napier.

“It does give us a starting point in the Wellington market, both retail and food service but potentially also wholesale. It increases our outlet for our own quota and also it provides us with the means of growing our business basically,” Mr Fleming says.

Aotearoa Fisheries, which runs the former Moana Pacific inshore fisheries business as well as managing the Maori stake in Sealord Group, is looking forward to a steady year despite the high exchange rate.


Greens co-leader Meteria Turei warns electoral reform could disenfranchised Maori.

She says Maori need to get involved in the debate on political party funding, especially on planned changes which could allow those with big wallets to fund parallel organisations which give their preferred party more advertising clout.

Ms Turei says National is even talking of allowing other organisations to secure television and radio time for election purposes.

“Maori don't have huge resources, only have limited political engagement and don’t have the issues heard when it comes to the political campaigns and any system that will reduce access by those with fewer resources is gong to be one that disenfranchises Maori from electoral campaigning,” Ms Turei says.

She says the system is being designed with no consideration of the needs or concerns of Maori.


Rugby commentator Ken Laban says Maori All Black Issac Ross is being made the scapegoat for the All Blacks' poor lineout during the Tri Nations Cup.

The 118 kg lock has been left out of the All Blacks' end of year tour, with selectors indicating they want him to develop upper body strength.

Mr Laban says while more weight may improve the Crusader's ability in the air and in getting to breakdowns, the story is a smokescreen.

“You can dress it up any way, you like, the spin coming out of the New Zealand Rugby Union, but he’s been dropped. He was young coming into the All Black environment, he was responsible for the lineouts, they didn’t go good, they made a change, they weren’t great and they dropped him. End of story,” Mr Laban says.


Sir Ngatata Love has been overwhelmingly re-elected to the Port Nicholson
Block Settlement Trust, which administers a multi-iwi settlement for land around Wellington Harbour.

18 candidates stood for the five open positions on the 11-member trust, and Sir Ngatata received more than 700 votes than the next highest candidate.

Former Te Tai Tonga MP Mahara Okeroa also won a seat on the trust.

Sir Ngatata says the trust has some major decisions to make about developing settlement properties and taking up options to buy other Crown properties.

“Some of the areas like the schools can provide the opportunity to go into the housing area for our people, community development, and because in Wellington the lands are very valuable you already have your 20 plus percent you need to be able to develop these for them to be able to pay their way, so we’re looking at all options,” Sir Ngatata says.

The Port Nicholson Trust may enter joint ventures to develop the larger properties.


The Maori tertiary students association is concerned Maori views and needs have been overlooked in the development of the new tertiary education strategy.

Tumanako president Jacqualene Poutu says the five year document released yesterday by Education Minister Anne Tolley shows a clear bias towards students coming straight from school to university.

She says Maori are more likely to enter tertiary study as mature students, and the strategy will mean resources won't be made available for their needs.

“They assume that rangatahi should be doing something at a particular age and putting provisions in place for it when it might not be the rangatahi’s reality. It’s a reality for older Maori students to come back and upskill when they’re a bit older, they’ve had their children. That is what the research is showing. I’m not sure why it’s not reflected in the strategy,” Ms Poutu says.

She says the strategy doesn't provide for the development systems needed to support Maori students through to degree stage.


Retiring Green MP Sue Bradford says more needs to be done to make Pakeha more aware of the true history of New Zealand.

She says too many people are ignorant of not just what is in the Treaty of Waitangi but also how colonisation affected Maori.

“We all need to keep working on turning that round. It is part I’m sure of why so many young Maori do ‘fail’ inside the Pakeha education system is because others are getting such a crook and really no idea of what the true history of this country is,” Ms Bradford says.

She says ignorance of history leads to continuing injustice against Maori.


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