Waatea News Update

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Monday, June 20, 2011

One vote best strategy

Labour's Te Tai Tokerau candidate Kelvin Davis says voters in the by-election have one vote, and they need to give it to the person they want to represent them.

Rivals hone Harawira and Solomon Tipene are arguing a vote for the list MP would be wasted, because he is already in Parliament.

But Mr Davis says he's after the same mandate as Mr Harawira.

“It's about seeking the mandate. It’s about seeking the voice of the people and people need to vote for whom they can trust to represent them the best in Te Tai Tokerau. To use this vote splitting argument is defeatist if Hone is out seeking the mandate. He needs to seek it one on one and not use these side issues about splitting votes,” Mr Davis says,

He says if the people of Te Tai Tokerau still have doubts about Labour, they should still be confident about his own ability to represent them.


Meanwhile, Hone Harawira is defending the endorsement his campaign got from a maverick Ratana minister.

Keremea Pene organised a kar-koi of Mana Party supporters around Te Tai Tokerau over the weekend.

Mr Harawira says his involvement seems to have brought out the worst in Labour's Kelvin Davis.

“Kereama Pene, I didn’t know how high he was in the faith but apparently he’s a senior minister within the Ratana faith and for Kelvin to go calling him nothing but a choirboy is really an insult to the people of Ratana eh,” Mr Harawira says.

Kereama Pene also drew fire from senior Ratana elder Te Whakaotinga Ron Smith of Matamata, who said the south Auckland minister's endorsement of Mr Harawira should not be misconstrued as an official church position.


Treaty claimants on Aotea-Great Barrier are keen to use a $4.6 million settlement package to kick-start economic development.

An agreement in principle signed by Ngati Rehua on the weekend also includes the Crown returning Okiwi Recreation Reserve and part of Hirakimata/Mt Hobson to the Ngati Wai hapu, and the transfer and gift back to the Crown of the Mokohinau Islands Scenic and Nature Reserve.

Spokesperson Rawiri Wharemate says the deal has come together quickly since negotiations started in 2009.

Agreements still need to be reached overt mutton-birding islands and water space before the settlement can be finalised.


The head of the Mangere Budgeting Services is warning Maori are likely to become victims of a new text messaging loan service.

Ferratum Group is offering short-term, unsecured micro-loans via a mobile phone to consumers looking for quick cash, such as when they are standing in a supermarket line without enough money in their eftpos account.

Darryl Evans says Maori are some of the heaviest users of his service, and 95 percent of them get into trouble because they can't service high interest, "easy' loans.

“Any family who’s vulnerable and any family who needs to borrow money to buy food should absolutely not be going to this type of fringe lender and paying ridiculous interest rates. It’s just obscene. If you borrow $200 over 30 days, you’ll be paying them back $312. Just at that level there’s a 56 percent interest rate,” he says.

Mr Evans says credit unions offer a far cheaper and safer option for struggling families needing short-term micro-loans.


Beware of false prophets is the advice Maori Party co-leader Tariana Turia is giving her former colleague Hone Harawira.

Mrs Turia says she's feeling a sense of deja vu at a claim by south Auckland Ratana minister Kereama Pene that Mr Harawira is the embodoment of a prophesy from church founder T W Ratana.

She says Mr Pene has a record of such stunts in the multitude of political parties he has joined.

“What we've got is an individual who attempts to become the prophet. He interprets prophesies. It’s not supported by the movement at all, It’s one individual who actually when I went with the Maori Party prophesised me too. It’s a load of nonsense. It’s really unfair on the Ratana movement,” Mrs Turia says.

She says as in any church, Ratana followers are free to vote as individuals for any party they want.


Hauraki Waikato MP Nanaia Mahuta says Tainui needs to get its house in order.

The tribe's executive fended off a bid to sack it by getting a high court injuntion postponing the half-yearly meeting of the tribal parliament, which was to be held on the weekend.

Ms Mahuta says the squabble with the executive means Te Kauhanganui is failing to take care of the tribe's business.

“Quite frankly, sooner or later people got to put egos aside, look at the business before the tribe, huge decisions need to be made and Te Kauhanganui and the marae must give direction or have to opportunity to give direction on some really critical issues facing us,” Ms Mahuta says.


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