Waatea News Update

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Maori Party caucus in disarray

A former Alliance president says the Maori Party caucus is in disarray.

Political strategist Matt McCarten says with its co-leaders now ministers outside cabinet, the party's three backbench MPs have been left to run their own race.

He says the furore over Hone Harawira's unauthorised sick day sightseeing in Paris and his abusive emails shows internal discipline is lacking.

“It's clear from the outside they are acting as five individuals. Unless they address that, instances like this will continue, so it’s a bit of a wake up call that all of them have got to take some responsibility about hw they act as a unit instead of five constituent MPs all doing their own thing,” Mr McCarten says.


Iwi leaders are meeting in Rotorua today on changes to the emissions trading scheme.

The Government's intention to delay the introduction of penalties for the creators of greenhouse gases could benefit some large Maori farming incorporations, even if opponents say ordinary Maori families will pay the price.

The Government with Maori Party support wants the bill passed before the United Nations climate change conference in Copenhagen in December.

Apirana Mahuika, the chair of the Ngati Porou runanga, says his iwi is taking the long view of climate change, and wants to see support for the carbon forest the iwi is planting on the East Coast.

“Ultimately Ngati Porou, in terms of the eroding land, not my generation but maybe 40 years from now, our mokopuna will stand to benefit from the effects and from the outcomes that planting trees would bring,” Mr Mahuika says.

Immediately after the climate change hui the iwi will discuss what alternative they would like to see if the Foreshore and Seabed Act is repealed.


One of the rangatahi behind a Nelson student anti-violence group says schools need to rethink the way they deal with violence in the classroom and playground.

Johny O'Donnell from Nelson College addressed a symposium in Auckland yesterday on violence and abuse, organised by Nga Pae o te Maramatanga, the Maori centre for research excellence.

The Motueka 15-year-old says large amounts of verbal abuse and small acts of aggression are tolerated in schools until things get out of hand ... when the perpetrator of physical violence usually ends up being suspended or expelled.

He says no attempt it made to identify the needs to the attacker or go to the source of what is happening and try to address it.

“We need to invest in our greatest treasure, our children. They need to be educated from day one about non-violence and peace. We need to empower victims to expose all forms of violence. And we need to understand the perpetrators and tautoko them through eradicating the demon of violence that possesses them and transforming them into caring and loving people,” Mr O'Donnell says.

Teachers and students need to confront violence when it happens.


A former Waitangi Tribunal director is standing by his decision to make public an email exchange with Tai Tokerau MP Hone Harawira.

Buddy Mikaere says his original email asking who paid for Mr Harawira's wife Hilda to travel with him to Paris was being light hearted, and he did not expect a stream of anti-Pakeha invective to come back.

He's now experiencing a backlash for taking up the MP's challenge to make the emails public.

“Well I didn't make the original comment where we should be sheeting home this thing, not to the fact I took him up on his invitation to disseminate what he'd been saying,” Mr Mikaere says.

Hone Harawira will give his first public response to the controversy surrounding his European trip and the ‘racist’ email message 10 this morning on Radio Waatea, in an interview with talk host Willie Jackson.


A native American expert on indigenous health says people with a strong grip on their culture are more able to withstand the forces that lead to violence.

Karina Walters, a member of the Choctaw nation of Oklahoma and the director of the indigenous wellness research institute at the University of Washington, was a speaker at yesterday's symposium in Auckland on violence and abuse, organised by the Maori centre for research excellence Nga Pae o te Maramatanga.

She says violence is not a part of indigenous culture, but was often a reaction to the historical trauma felt by indigenous people and the little acts of aggression they experience every day because of racism and stereotyping.

“The folks who are coming to our attention are the ones who aren’t weathering it very well. On the practical end you’ve got to stop the violence on the ground first, but on the healing end it’s beginning to look at how violence was learned. How has this been part of and experience over generations and how you can begin to repair that and heal,” Professor Walters says.

Teaching people about their history and giving them pride in their culture is often the first step away from violent responses.


The head of te Wananga o Aotearoa says getting young Maori into second chance education is a national issue.

Research from Victoria University's Institute of policy studies indicates tertiary institutions and wananga in particular are doing a poor job getting Maori males into second chance education.

Bentham Ohia says the problem needs to be tackled earlier, rather than let Maori men into the workforce without being able to read and write.

“There are challenges earlier in the secondary school system around Maori male achievement levels also so there’s some commensurate challenges for the whole country and we must focus on our collective resources and strengths,” Mr Ohia says.

Te Wananga o Aotearoa has developed trade training courses which should bring back many young Maori males into education.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hone Harawira's is a total wanker is is symbolic of the hate most of these people carry around with them. If we add up the contrubution of maori to NZ and then deduce how much it cost in welfare payment,prison , health etc its a big negative ! It is left to the rest of us to support these people.

3:43 PM  

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