Waatea News Update

News from Waatea 603 AM, Urban Maori radio, first with Maori news

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Cost keeps kids from kindergartens

The head of New Zealand Kindergartens says cost and access are keeping Maori children away from pre-school.

Claire Wells is endorsing a call from last week's Early Education Federation Forum in Wellington for more investment in the sector.

She says more than two thirds of non-Maori children are in some form of early childhood education, compared with just 40 percent of tamariki Maori, and the Budget cuuts which are now coming into effect will make the situation worse.

“Eighty five thousand children are under the age of five and of those about 36,000 attend an early childhood service. So proportionally there are fewer Maori children attending an early childhood service than there are for non-Maori,” sh says.

Ms Wells says pre school education needs to be seen as an investment rather than a cost.

LOWLIFES PLUNDER MAORI WARDENS BASE

The Mangere Maori Wardens are appealing for the public to keep their eyes and ears open for equipment stolen during a break in last week.

Spokesperson Thomas Henry says whoever was responsible smashed windows throughout the Mangere Town Centre.

They also took communications equipment from the wardens' base, which will be hard to replace.

The radio gear will be of little value to those who took it.

BENJI MARSHALL A RARE GENIUS

Commentator Ken Laban says league fans on both sides of the Tasman are acknowledging the rare genius of Kiwi captain Benji Marshall.

The Ngai Tuhoe-raised NRL superstar was at his mesmerising best in Brisbane on the weekend as he orchestrated every Kiwi try-scoring move, including the last minute play that put New Zealand ahead of Australia to take the Four Nations final.

Mr Laban says the 89 kg West Tigers standoff, who has notched up 13 tests for the Kiwis, is in a class of his own, even though his career has been interrupted by injury.

BALDHEADS THE TARGET IN TAIPA OCCUPATION

A leader of a group planning to reoccupy a waterfront reserve at Taipa says he's unconcerned at the reaction from Pakeha homeowners.

Wikaatana Popata and nine others were arrested and issued with trespass notices when they were cleared from the land last week.

He says they plan to go back to Taipa today after a hikoi through Kaitaia ... despite claims the continuing series of occupations is scaring away Pakeha from businesses in the settlement.

“Most of these are holiday houses for those rich baldheads living down in Auckland or overseas so when Pakeha say that they are only chasing the money, they don’t care about the well being of the river. A lot of our people still live off this river, so, all Pakeha is chasing is the money,” Mr Popata says.

He says his generation is not bound by any treaty settlements now being negotiated by his Ngati Kahu elders.

NGI TAI KEEN TO EXTEND COCKLE RAHUI

South Auckland iwi Ngai Tai wants to continue a ban on taking cockles from Maraetai for at least another two years.

Spokesman James Brown says the rahui means stocks of the shellfish in the Firth of Thames are starting to recover.

But he says the iwi wants more time to be sure, and may consider seasonal rather than full opening.

SOUTHSIDE SPECTACLE CREATES VIBRANT FILM BACKDROP

Matariki director Michael Bennett from Te Arawa says he chose to shoot his first feature in Otara because of the area's vitality.

The film, set around a fisherman turned car thief, had its south Auckland premiere in Manukau last night and opens in selected cinemas on Thursday.

Mr Bennett, who has also helmed documentaries and episodes of hit TV show Outrageous Fortune, says it was a natural setting for his screenplay.

“It's a part of the world we don’t get on our screens all that often and that’s a shame because there’s not that many film makers that come from South Auckland so maybe it‘s not the first thing that comes to mind but it’s a vibrant place where a whole lot of different people, a whole lot of different cultures and contexts and stories just intersect and overlap in real life and I suppose that’s what our film is about,” Mr Bennett says.

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