Waatea News Update

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Reform won’t deliver foreshore to Maori

Labour leader Phil Goff says the changes the government is proposing to the Foreshore and Seabed Act are superficial.

He says even the Prime Minister can't tell the difference between terms like Crown ownership, public domain and public space.

He says the only difference from the law introduced by the last Labour government is a change in the role of the High Court.

“Customary title and customary rights can be recognised through the new High Court process or direct negotiations. That’s a little bit different from the existing Foreshore and Seabed (Act). You could go to the court for a statement but not a decision. Now you can take it back but the criteria is essentially the same as it has always been, and that certainly doesn’t vest ownership of the foreshore and seabed within Maoridom,” Mr Goff says.

He says the only one speaking the truth on the deal is Taitokerau MP Hone Harawira, who says the Prime Minister is pandering to rednecks rather than giving Maori justice.

A Maori public health specialist says whanau should use Men's health week to tell their men how much they are valued.

Dr Rhys Jones from Mana Tane O Aotearoa, the Maori Men's Health Collective, says Maori men are providers, protectors and keepers of important family information.

He says they are raised to put the needs of others before their own, and many fail to have regular health checkups.

“If you look at the contribution Maori men have made and continue to make, it’s huge and we need to really value that and nurture that and empower Maori men to improve their health. A lot needs to be done at a political and dressing the socioeconomic factors and other things that create huge risks, and actually doing something to improve the environments we live in,” Dr Jones says.

Maori men lag behind non Maori in most health indices, especially heart health and diabetes.


Shearing commentator Koro Mullins says Ngati Kahungunu shearer Cameron Ferguson is making the most of his first trip overseas.

The youngest ever Golden Shears open champion is heading for the World Championships in Wales next month.

As part of his warm-up he took out the Royal Cornwall show over the weekend, shearing 14 sheep in 10 minutes 15 seconds, a minute faster than the next best competitor.

Koro Mullins says many Maori shearers are being drawn to work in the northern hemisphere, where they can earn 2 euro a sheep.


Promoted Labour MP Nanaia Mahuta says proposed changes to the Foreshore and Seabed Act could muddy future Treaty of Waitangi claims.

Ms Mahuta was yesterday bumped to Labour's front bench because of the demotion of Shane Jones and Chris Carter for mismanagement of their ministerial credit cards while in government.

She says the National-Maori party deal to replace Crown ownership fo the foreshore with a concept of public space may not be a good thing for Maori.

“I would have thought Maori would have preserved thee Crown ownership in an outright way so that it’s clear what the treaty obligation of the Crown is. No one really knows how this public space definition may affect any kind of negotiated outcome going forward,” Ms Mahuta says.

The proposed replacement for the Foreshore and Seabed Act falls far short of the expectations raised by the Maori Party.


Maori ultra-distance runner Lisa Tamati is off to conquer the Gobi Desert.

The Taranaki based jeweler has run the length of New Zealand and the breath of Death Valley in the United States, and she's now taking on the Turpan Basin, the second hottest desert and second lowest place on the planet.

She must carry her own food and equipment on the 250 kilometre race, known as the Gobi March, which starts on June 27.

The lifelong asthmatic says sport is the key to a healthy life, and she wants to inspire Maori and pacifika people to physically challenge themselves.

“Most of us don’t do enough sport, we don’t take enough care of our bodies and the more exercise we do, the stronger we get. My mission now is not only to run but, especially for our Maori and Pacific Island communities, show that you have to take care of yourself and sport is the best way to do it,” Ms Tamati says.

She will wear a helmet camera one the race to record footage for a documentary.


A long time scholar of the Maori world launches her latest book at Auckland University's Waipapa marae tonight.

Dame Joan Metge says she put together the essays in Tuamaka: The challenge of different in Aotearoa New Zealand around her 2004 Waitangi Rua Rau Tau lecture, which was overshadowed by Don Brash's Orewa speech on race relations.

She says a tuamaka is a round rope with six strands, which she found in a list of the ropes Maui and his brother wove to snare the sun.

“I wanted something that was simple while at the same time saying that the two languages complement each other, because the titles of both the book and the essays are not just translations of each other, they fill each other out as we do as a nation to a certain extent, and as I would like to see more and more,” Dame Joan says.

Tuamaka is published by Auckland University Press.


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