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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Tobacco win inspires iwi

The chair of Ngati Kahungunu is applauding a Wairoa tobacconist and barber who answered the iwi's wero to stop selling cigarettes.

Ngahiwi Tomoana says Mike Bird's decision to close down part of his business that was turning over $3000 a week will give the iwi confidence in its strategy to demonise tobacco retailers and highlight the social benefits of a smoke free community.

“Well it's bowled us over and we thought if a retailer steeped in tobacco can see the benefit of having Maori clients for 10, 15 years longer, this only augurs well for us addressing the big retailers like Pak ‘n’ Save and New World,” Mr Tomoana says.

The 60,000-member iwi is seeking meetings with big retailers and petrol station owners discuss taking tobacco products from view, even if they won't accept an outright stop to sales.


Buck Shelford is considered a giant among men - and he considers that too big.

The rugby legend is the new face of a Jenny Craig weight loss campaign aimed at men.

He says he stopped his regular exercise programme when he had a bout of cancer three years ago, and it's made him aware of the importance of what he eats.

“It's about the quantity of what we’re eating. We’re eating huge meals and the body doesn’t really need it. If the body doesn’t need it, it’s not going to assimilate it for the energy it needs. All it’s going to do is sit in our gut and all the bad things in that food turns to fat and all we do is get heavier and heavier,” Mr Shelford says.

If he gets his extra 20 kilos off within six months, he may take to the rugby field again.


The secretary of the New Zealand Maori Council, Tata Parata, says its late deputy chair, Jim Nicholls, was committed to giving Maori communities a voice.

Mr Nicholls died at his home in Thames on Sunday aged 70, surrounded by his family.

From Ngati Haua, Ngati Maru and Ngati Hako, the former secondary school teacher and insurance salesman was drawn into the Maori Council in the 1980s, when Hauraki established itself as a separate region apart from the Waikato council.

Mr Parata says in recent years Mr Nicholls was a valued contributor, and in recent years picked up much of the workload from long serving chair Sir Graham Latimer.

“He dedicated himself to ensuring that the council was always used as a sounding board for community needs. He has probably devoted the latter part of his life to ensuring that the Maori Council and the provision of the (Maori Community Development) Act were part of Maori community development,” Mr Parata says.

Jim Ponui Nicholls will be taken this morning to Matai Whetu Marae near Thames. His funeral service is at 11.30 on Thursday morning at St Georges Anglican Church in Thames.


Feilding iwi Ngati Kauwhata will today bury one of its most distinguished sons, Bruce Poananga, with full military honours.

Major Poananga, who also has Ngati Porou, Whanganui and Toa Rangatira whakapapa, died on Friday aged 79.

His daughter, Atareta Poananga, says her father was chosen by Sir Apirana Ngata to be the first Maori cadet to go through Duntroon Military Academy in Australia.

His military career included service with the Maori Battalion in Italy, in J Force, leading the Fijian contingent in the Malaya Emergency and serving with the United Nations in Jerusalem during the Six Day War.

She says he played a significant role in an incident at the end of the Second World War, when the Tito's Yugoslav forces were about to over-run the Italian city of Trieste.

“He was making a move to circle strategic areas and so dad had told me he had issued a command to surround the place with tanks and so then Titi backed off and went back to his own territory,” Ms Poananga says.

Major Bruce Poananga's funeral is at 2 this afternoon at Aorangi Marae in Fielding.

Me noho tonu koe i to ahuru mowai takoto mai ra


There's a reprieve for lessees of Te Arawa Lakes Trust land in Little Waihi near Maketu.

Earlier this year the trust served eviction notices on about 30 water front houses in the Bay of Plenty settlement because of concerns about effluent leeching into the estuary.

“Trust chair Toby Curtis says the notices won't be enforced until all aother options are explored.

“We have to still maintain the license-holders’ agreement as it were, that at same stage they may have to vacate but at this stage no one needs to be evicted from their properties until all properties have been examined on an individual basis,” Mr Curtis says.

A sewage treatment plant which gained resource consent last month may resolve some of the problems.


Qantas award winner Bailey Mackey says it's important Maori production houses make work for mainstream outlets as well as Maori television.

Mr Mackey's Television One show One Land, which out Maori and Pakeha families in living conditions similar to those which existed in the mid 1800s, won the best reality show tohu.

He says it's been a logical progression for him from Radio Ngati Porou and Maori Television.

“I love our reo irirangi, and Maori radio stations, I love Maori TV, but I also think we need to keep telling our stories and offering our perspectives on mainstream as well,” Mr Mackey says.

He says Maori have proven themselves as documentary makers, but reality television with a high reo Maori content appealed to him as a way to appeal to a younger audience.


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