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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Monday, October 18, 2010

Sharples slams Finlayson for Hide scare

New Zealand First co-leader Pita Sharples says he’s disappointed that Attorney General is considering late changes to the Marine and Coastal Areas Bill to rule out charges for beach access.

Dr Sharples says Chris Finlayson is pandering to ACT’s grandstanding.
He says in the spirit of inclusiveness, the Maori Party has already conceded that customary title did not allow limits on access … but ACT leader Rodney Hide is twisting the issue around.

“What makes it even worse, it’s deliberate, because Rodney knows jolly well that access given by Maori in this act is complete and free access so it’s mischievous and we’re disappointed also in minister Finlayson for agreeing, seeming to agree that he should put in some SOP to let this happen,” Dr Sharples says.

He says Rodney Hide is keen to stop Maori customary owners charging for beach access, but he is not prepared to put the same limits on those people who have freehold title to coastal areas.


Former New Zealand First MP Edwin Perry says being voted off the Masterton District Council hasn’t put him off politics.

The Ngati Kahungunu company director says the loss allows him to concentrate on getting back into national politics.

He'll put his name forward for New Zealand First’s list, and says on current polling the party should be back in Parliament after the next election.

“The polls, the last one was 4.5 percent. New Zealand First is not even on the benches. For the last election, New Zealand First missed out by 8000 votes with all that raruraru that went down, that’s all he missed out by. If that hadn’t happened, can you imagine how many and that would be a real threat to National,” Mr Perry says.

New Zealand First holds its annual conference at the end of the month.


A new online tool will make it easier for researchers to get information about Maori health trends.

Massey University's centre for public health research is working with Otago Univerity's Eru Pomare Centre and the Maori directorate of the Ministry of Health to make regional and historical data readily available to health workers, researchers and the public.

The project leader, associate professor Barry Borman, says it will give people a sense of things like the impact of vaccination programmes on meningococcal disease or whether hiking tobacco tax affects Maori smoking rates.

“Having CPHRonline helped us see the distribution if the various health outcomes that are affecting Maori more than non Maori and then it gives us the opportunity to start addressing those but also to monitor the progress we are making. We will continue to put up data tat becomes available so we will be able to build up time trends and show how they are changing and progress is being made on various programmes and policies,” Professor Borman says Massey's centre for public health research is keen to hear from others who want to put data on the site, which is at C P H R online.massey.ac.nz


Associate Education Minister Pita Sharples says consultation over standards for Maori immersion schools has paid off.

Ngā Whanaketanga Rumaki Maori standards in literacy and numeracy will be introduced for the next school year.

Dr Sharples says by taking an extra year the ministry avoided some of the conflict going on in mainstream schools.

“The schools I have spoke too are happy because they have had a chance to work and to test them out whereas the mainstream schools didn’t have that opportunity but Maori did because they were new and they were done in a Maori cultural idiom rather than a translation of the mainstream schools,” Dr Sharples says.

He says Maori parents want teachers to be evaluated.


Labour has come out of its annual conference pledging to more to get young Maori into work when it next gets into government.

Leader Phil Goff promised to rejuvenate and strengthen apprenticeships and to focus on Maori trade training.

List MP Shane Jones says Labour’s Maori are concerned as many as one in two young Maori and Pacific women are not studying, training or working.

“The feeding an appetite where people believe they can live a life without having to do any of those three I think really distorts people’s beliefs that they have a right to consume without having to contribute and when Phil Goff talks about getting the balance right between rights and responsibilities he’s certainly got the Maori caucus support 100 percent behind him there,” he says.

Mr Jones says Maori will also benefit from the party’s commitment to pre-school education.


A surge of votes from viewers made Roman Nicholas from Ngati Ranginui and Te Arawa this year’s Homai Te Pakipaki winner.

Maori Television co-host Matai Smith says the Tauranga 20-year-old brushed off a bout of flu and took his parents’ advice to hire a suit so he’d look better on TV.

He says that went down well with the home audience, even if he wasn’t the favourite of the capacity crowd at Auckland’s Logan Campbell Centre.

Roman Nicholas took 22 percent of the vote, double the score of Tuwharetoa’s Eddie Biddle, with Warena Pomama from the Wairarapa third.


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