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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Friday, June 17, 2011

Tainui executive wins reprieve

Tainui has postponed the half-yearly meeting of its tribal parliament after the tribal executive won a High Court injunction.

Te Ara Taura chair Tukoroirangi Morgan says the meeting's agenda, including a motion to sack all 10 elected members of the executive, fell outside the rules.

He says he now needs to sit down with Te Kauhanganui's chair, Tania Martin.

“The tribal parliament hui scheduled for tomorrow is not going to take place. Both myself and the chair of the parliament now have to sit down and talk about making sure that the resolutions and the business that is to be discussed has to be appropriate and fall within the rules, got to be dealt with in the proper way, so we won’t get to a tribal hui until maybe three or
four weeks time,” Mr Morgan says.

Te Ara Taura is keen for a sheduled review of Tainui's governance systems and processes to go ahead.

MAORI PARTY COMES OUT AGAINST CASINO EXPANSION

Maori Affairs Minister Pita Sharples says the Maori Party will oppose any expansion of Sky City's casino operations.

Dr Sharples says he's told the prime minister of his strong opposition to the deal being proposed in exchange for the company building a new convention centre.

He doesn't accept John Key's argument that having more pokies and gaming areas won't worsen problem gambling.

“When we first built the casino I trained 700 people to work in there, and they couldn’t gamble, and I’ve also monitored the situation there and been with the problem gaming people through their programmes and what they do to see. It’s not nice at all, so anything that increases the possibility of problem gambling, we’ve got to oppose,” Dr Sharples says.

He's been trying for years to get a combined convention and Maori cultural centre built on Auckland's waterfront.

HARAWIRA RELISHING PROPHET MANTLE

Te Tai Tokerau by-election candidate Hone Harawira is shrugging off the mantle of prophet placed on him by a Ratana minister.

Kereama Pene says the Mana Party leader fulfills a prophesy by church founder T W Ratana that a young man will rise up in the north carrying the Treaty of Waitangi to give people new hope.

Mr Harawira says he asked if they couldn't find someone else.

“I'm happy to be that person in terms of the Treaty of Waitangi because it’s in my blood, it’s in my whakapapa, but the whole prophesy thing, that’s something between the people of the Ratana faith. My focus is to be the best treaty activist that I can be and as much as possible to be the best leader that I can be,” her says.

Mr Harawira says he always respected the fact Ratana carried the bible in one hand and the treaty in the other.

TRUST PLAN TO REINVIGORATE NORTHLAND

Labour's Te Tai Tokerau by-election candidate is calling for a $100 million investment trust to re-tool the region's economy.

Kelvin Davis says a similar fund established when Labour stopped native logging on the West Coast means that part of the country has barely felt the latest recession.

He says the north can't be allowed to further towards third world conditions.

“Why don't we do something like that and that’s a really excellent idea, to set up a trust specifically for Te Tai Tokerau since we are deemed to be the basket case of New Zealand, that is going to invest in all the job creation and wealth creation and creation of opportunities,” Mr Davis says.

Mr Davis says instead of investing in Te Tai Tokerau, National is cutting or freezing funds for essential services like public health.

SETTLEMENT SUCCESS BRINGING GOVERNANCE CRISES

The chair of Tainui's Te Ara Taura executive says internal division is inevitable in post-settlement iwi, and they need to evolve mechanism to cope with it.

The High Court has granted an injunction preventing a meeting of the tribe's Te Kauhanganui parliament tomorrow that would have considered a motion to sack the 10 elected excutive members.

Tukoroirangi Morgan says with $700 million in assets, there will inevitably be tensions.

“You are taking tribes from a start line where in our case we were virtually landless. When you then go through transformational change as a result of the opportunities that arise through settlement, there is always going to be those who are trying to put themselves into positions where they have greater say,” Mr Morgan says.

He now needs to sit down with Te Kauhanganui chair Tania Martin to agree on an agenda for the parliament's six-monthly meeting.

MORE MAORI TEACHERS NEEDED TO AVOID BURN-OUT

The president of the Secondary Principals' Association wants incentives to attract more Maori and Pacific Island teachers.

Patrick Walsh says they're needed to lighten the workload of those already in the workforce, especially in low decile schools.

He says young Maori and Pacific teachers often suffer from burn out because of the extra responsibilities foisted on them.

“If it's a Maori teacher they say you can take kapa haka, and you can also deal with any bad behaviour of Maori students so instantly their workload is considerable and they become a magnet for other teachers to sort out a lot of issues to do with Maori students, Maori under-achievement, Maori language, Maori sensitivity,” Mr Walsh says.

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