Waatea News Update

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Emissions trading scheme changes a con

Labour's Maori affairs spokesperson says the Maori Party is trying to con its supporters about the deal it's done on changes to the emissions trading scheme.

Parekura Horomia says the main effect of the deal will be to pass the cost of emissions on to taxpayers, rather than penalising polluters, as the Maori Party had been promising to do.

He says claims the deal protects low income households from the full effect of the policy change don't stack up.

“One of the co-leader’s statement that the deal is really in the increase in the benefit payments to our people, but there’s always a seasonally-adjusted payment that’s made every 18 months and that’s what’s going to kick in anyway so it’s a bit of a sorry state,” Mr Horomia says.

He says given the Maori Party's failure to deliver to its constituents, it's time for Labour to up the ante in parliamentary debate on jobs, education, families and whanau development.


Te Tai Hauauru MP and Wanganui resident Tariana Turia has welcomed the restoration of the H in the river city's name as the right thing to do.

The Geographic Board voted unanimously for the change, which will now go for public consultation before the Minister for Land Information makes the final decision.

Mrs Turia says she's pleased for all the people of the river who have been fighting to correct a historical spelling mistake,

She says it won't affect the way the name is pronounced.

“Whanganui, that’s been another misleading thing, that people would have to say fih … they don’t. Other iwi will because that’s their dialect and they’re entitled tO say fih because it’s spelt wh and dialectically that’s how they would pronounce it, but back home, and in Taranaki as well, we say wih,” Mrs Turia says.


Meanwhile, an exhibition of photos of Maori life on the Whanganui River at the turn of the 20th century is about to close.
Te Pihi Mata, the Sacred Eye, has been on display in the Wanganui Museum for more than a year.

Co-curator Che Wilson says the show is based around a collection of work by William Partington, which the iwi helped buy after stopping their sale at auction several years ago.
He says it's proved a wise investment for the museum and the iwi.

“It's a exhibition that received a number of awards, it increased visitor numbers and got a lot of rangatahi, young uri looking for their tupuna photos, into the museum which they’ve generally not been interested in doing,” he says.

Te Pihi Mata closes tomorrow.


There's a cautious welcome from Whanganui iwi to a recommendation the H be restored to the city's name.

Because there were objections lodged to the iwi request for the spelling change, the Geographic Board has referred its spelling recommendation to Land Information Minister Maurice Wiliamson to make the final decision.

Gerrard Albert from the Whanganui River Maori Trust Board says he's still apprehensive because of that step.

“The decision of the board goes to the minister and I think there’s going to be lobbying for Mayor Michael Laws and his council to have those recommendations rejected. We’re just apprehensive about the final outcome,” Mr Albert says.

If the spelling isn't corrected this time, it will be back on the table for the Whanganui treaty claim negotiations which are going on now.


Former Maori affairs minister Parekura Horomia says iwi leaders aren't doing enough about child poverty.

Iwi leaders were notable for their absence from yesterday's Every Child Counts summit in Auckland, which called for higher welfare benefits and clear targets to eradicate child poverty.

Mr Horomia says benefits are only part of the answer, and it bugs him that iwi leaders are more focused on enterprise development and growing treaty settlements than the social needs of their people.

“If we don't concentrate on this end to ensure our children aren’t left in poverty for whatever reason I think progress has slowed alarmingly and it is a wake up time for iwi leaders and other people to make sure they are in on that. That’s the beginning of the rot if there is a rot amongst our people,” Mr Horomia says.

He says the previous Labour government took a huge number of children out of poverty with its working for families package, but it clearly wasn't enough with the recession driving more than one in four Maori kids into poverty.


A 20-year collaboration between a Pakeha jazz musician and a Tuhoe primary school teacher is being honoured as one of the great musical partnerships.

Richard Nunns and the late Hirini Melbourne will be inducted into the New Zealand Music Hall of Fame at the APRA F awards in Christchurch tonight.

Working with master carver Brian Flintoff, the pair built traditional Maori instruments ... based on originals that had been lying silent in museums for decades.

They set worked out how the instruments had been played ... taught countless others ... and wrote songs using the taonga puoro.

“For Hirini and Brian and I, we’d call it passion. Our spouses would call it obsession. It’s been an extraordinary decision and I miss Hirini wildly and still,” Nunns says.


Anonymous Ashley said...

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