Waatea News Update

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

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Friday, September 01, 2006

Puoro players with orchestra out west

Maori Taonga Puoro musicians are tuning their eyes to reading bars and notes rather than playing by ear as they take to the stage tonight with the Waitakere City Orchestra.

The concert will celebrate the opening of the new Waitakere City Council Building in Henderson and the Laureate Art Awards aimed at paying tribute to those with an outstanding career in the arts.

Taonga Puoro musician Rewi Spraggon says tonight will be a challenge in playing along side an orchestra.


One of the tribes which brought the first Maori commercial fisheries claim 20 years ago has finally received its settlement.

Te Runanga o Te Rarawa if the first of the Muriwhenua iwi to become a Mandated Iwi Organisation, and it should be able to take delivery of its first $6.9 million in deepwater quota, cash and shares before the new fisheries season starts in October.

Te Rarawa manager Kevin Robinson says having its own quota will allow it to better plan its economic future.

Kevin Robinson says Maori in Muriwhenua were historically reliant on their fisheries because of a lack of land and other resources, so they were particularly hard hit by the introduction of the quota management system..

Te Ohu Kaimoana fisheries settlement trust has also a approved the mandate of a group representing Te Atihaunui a Paparangi/ Whanganui Nui Tonu, which will get an intial $5.7 million in fisheries assets.


The police manager for Maori, Pacific and Ethnic Services says public safety, not racism is the reason for the introduction of taser.

Maori Party MP Hone Harawira has accused the police of racism for choosing to trial the 50 thousand volt stun guns in urban areas with high maori and Pacific Island populations.

But Superintendent Pieri Munroe says the police wanted something that would allow police to deal with violent offenders in a non-lethal way.

Pieri says the 12 month taser trial, which started day, involves 180 specially-selected officers who have at least two years service.


The executive officer of far north iwi Te Rarawa says he expects Maori will soon own the majority of the New Zealand Fisheries industry.

Te Rarawa has become the first of the Muriwhenua Fisheries claimants to meet the mandating requiiremnts and collect their fisheries settlement assets.

Kevin Robinson says the more than $6.9 million in quota, cash and shares will give the iwi a sound basis for growth.

Mr Robinson says building on the initial settlement in the 1980s which gave Maori 10 percent of fisheries quota, Maori now own or control more than 40 percent of the industry, and that will increase as smaller industry participants retire or otherwise exit.

Kevin Robinson says as iwi receive their fisheries settlement assets, they are looking for ways to work collectively to increase their wealth.

Whanganui tribes also received their settlement this week, meaning Te Ohu Kaimoana fisheries settlement trust is now more than halfway through its asset distribution process.


One of the most popular Maori broadcasters makes a return to the airwaves tonite.

Hori Bennet for many years hosted the Papa Ruru show, which was simulcast throughout the country on the iwi network.

Funding cuts forced him to give up his midnight to dawn show, and for the past 6 months he has been archiving the thousands of waita he collected over the 15 years he was on air.

Mr Bennet says the return of the Papa Ruru show tonight on the 603 am frequency in Auckland, is as if his career has gone full circle.

He was the weekend overnight host on Radio Aotearoa, which started broadcasting in Auckland in the late 80's.


Birthday festivities today for Te Runanga o Ngati Porou.

Maori Affairs Minister Parekura Horomia joined his fellow iwi members at Iretekura Marae in Waipiro Bay to of the 19 years that the Runanga has been running.

Mr Horomia says the Runanga is doing impressive things within its iwi including rejuvenating East Coast marae and successfully managing Ngati Porou Fisheries.

He says its survival is worthy of celebration.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Taser trial concern for mothers

Far North kuia Saana Murray says mothers should be outraged at the trial of taser stun guns by police.

Taitokerau MP Hone Harawira has branded the trial which starts today racist, because it is confined to areas with high numbers of young Maori and Pacific Island people like Counties Manukau, Waitakere City and Porirua.

Mrs Murray says most mothers would dread the prospect of fatalities caused by taser toting police officers, and she backs Mr Harawira.

“I am supporting our member and not introduce foreign things from another country for slaying our future mokopuna. I do believe all mothers should complain about this gun,” Murray said.

Some 180 officers will be issued with the tasers, which deliver a 50 thousand volt shock.


Greens Maori affairs spokesperson Meteria Turei says her party won't be voting for the Maori Purposes Bill, because of the deadline it imposes on lodging historical treaty claims.

Ms Turei says Labour has assumed that all iwi and hapu have had the time and resources needed to get their claims ready for the Waitangi Tribunal.

She says that is simply not the case, and some claims may never be heard.

Ms Turei says the deadline is being imposed on Maori to apease an electorate which is unsympathetic to Maori claims.

“Labour proposed a 2008 deadline, but they have not talked to Maori, there’s been no consultation or discussion about it, and without the consent of the people who have to meet the deadline, it is an absolute disgrace and outrage,” Turei said..

Meteria Turei says if the government wants to speed up the claims process, it should give the Waitangi Tribunal more resources to deal with the claims already before it.


Nurses in the Pacific Islands are looking to New Zealand to learn how their cultural needs can be incorporated into nursing practice in their countries.

That's the view of Desmond Canterbury Te Ngaruru, the vice chairperson of the New Zealand Nurses Organisation Runanga, who is representing the union at a Pacific nurses conference in Western Samoa this weekend.

Mr Te Ngaruru says nurses from New Zealand and Australia play an important support role for their Pacfific colleagues, sharing information and education programmes and giving a lead on work conditions.

He says Maori pioneered the acknowledgement of culture in nursing practice.

“It's an ongoing educational process into implementing our kaupapa maori around our profession, and that’s also encouraging our non-Maori counterparts and colleagues to take on board the necessities that we have for out people that are nursed,” Te Ngaruru said.


Maori Party finance spokesperson Hone Harawira says his party has changed its stance on the Kiwisaver scheme because it doesn't want to be seen to be opposing savings.

The party's four-member caucus decided to support the bill on its third reading, after voting against it during the first two stages.

Mr Harawira says the party wanted to use the first and second readings to make the point that the government wasn't addressing the needs of many Maori.

“Issues of poverty were important. Issues in terms of how much it’s going to cost should anyone want to get in, and a lot of low income people aren’t going to be able to get in, the fact that beneficiaries weren’t going to be able to participate, all those sorts of things, We wanted to signal clearly at the first reading, and we did. We fought a good fight, but we are comfortable with the view that the notion of savings is a good idea,” Harawira said.

Hone Harawira says the Government needs to look for other ways to help low income people and beneficiaries to start saving.


Associate health minister Mita Ririnui says a National MP Tony Ryall's attack on a public health campaign in the Bay of Plenty is an attempt to create racial division.

The Western Bay of Plenty Public Health Organisation is offering free gym memberships to low income people if it will lower their risk of heart disease.

The PHO has started screening Maori men aged between 35 and 45 because they are at the highest risk of cardiovascular disease.

Mr Ryall claimed in Parliament this week that it was a race based programme.

But Mr Ririuni says it's a responsible and effective approach.

IN: It's certainly going to save lives. Look, Mari are three times more likely to suffer coronary disease than non-Maori, and that’s a statement in itself, and something that the Western Bay PHO has identified as a key target area for them,” Ririnui said.


Green Party MP Meteria Turei says the setting of a deadline on lodging historical treaty claims is a way of pressuring tribes into direct negotiations.

She says it is part of a pattern where the Office of Treaty Settlements gets far more resources and support than the Waitangi Tribunal.

Ms Turei says the deadline, which is contained in the Maori Purposes Bill now before Parliament, is a misuse of the Tribunal.

“The tribunal was set up and to hear and report on the historical wrongs as a form of restoration of justice. It was not a forum for government to drive their claims negotiation process,” Turei said.

Metira Turei says the Greens will be voting against the Maori Purposes Bill becuase of the claims deadline.

Lord Cooke, champion of rule of law, dies

Robin Cooke will be remembered as a distingushed New Zealander who made an enormous contribution to the way Maori and Pakeha work together.

That is the tribute paid by Ngai Tahu leader Sir Tipene O'Regan to Lord Cooke of Thorndon, who has died aged 80.

Ngai Tahu was a party to some of the major cases treaty cases heard by Lord Cooke, including the 1987 Maori Council State Owned Enterprise case and a later case which stopped the sale of state forest land.

Sir Tipene says Lord Cooke was a great upholder of the rule of law.

“He put the brakes on the state and prevented it from doing certain things unless there had been some involvement with or consideration of the Maori interest, so in that sense he was a restraining hand on the unlimited assertions of the state, and that was probably one of his great distinctions,” he said.

Sir Tipene O'Regan says Lord Cooke helped to define the place of the Treatry of Waitangi in New Zealand's constitution.


Iwi along the Manawatu River have united to protest a lack of action by Regional and District Councils to clean up pollution in the River.

Under the banner of Te Roopu Huirapa, Ngati Kahungunu, Rangitane, Muaupoko and Ngati Raukawa held a public Hui in Palmerston North yesterday to discuss the health of the awa.

Hui organiser Malcolm Mulholland says the councils have bent over backwards to assist businesses, to the detriment of the river.

“All of those 190 permits that have been granted for businesses to pump crap into the river revoked and begin the clean up operation on the Manawatu River and eventually return it to a state whereby people can go down and have a swim, have a drink collect kai, and not fear being ill from doing so,” Mulholland said.

Malcolm Mulholland milk company Fonterra pumps the equivalent of 250 milk tankers of effluent into the river every day for six months of the year.


A Ngati Raukawa man who heads a study team researching diabetes in Maori communities, says there is no magic pill to solve the problem.

Chris Cunningham, the director of Massey University's Te Pumanawa Hauora research centre for Maori health and development, says the centre is joining with the University of Sydney to see if there are common links between Maori and Aboriginal men in the way they produce insulin.

Professor Cunningham says the research aims to identifying ways to delay the onset of diabetes.

“Most Maori people at the ages of 20 or 30 are fit, well people, and the challenge is to try to extend that fit, well part of your life, and that’s what we are understanding, how you do that. Not much use just describing the problem, you don’t learn a great deal about that, we want to know as Maori what we can do to maintain the wellness that we have,” Cunningham said.

Chris Cunningham are Maori and Aboriginal men are five times more likely to get diabetes than non-Maori.


Call him King Tuheitia.

That's the word from Tainui elders at the first Kingitanga poukai attended by the new Maori king.

Waatea News reporter Mania Clark says the hui at Whataapaka Marae on the sourthern shore of the Manukau Harbour was one the largest poukai ever recorded, with several thousand people from Tainui and other tribes in attendence.

Since his coronation last week King Tuheita has been referred to as Te Arikinui or Tuheitia Paki.

Elders say the use of the surname is inappropriate, and the term king or kingi is the one which has been adopted by all his male predecessors.

Ms Clark says King Tuheita was flanked on the mahau or verandah of the meeting house by Te Ariki Morehu from Ngati Pikiao, Pou Temara from Tuhoe and Erima Henare from Ngati Hine, symbolising the support he is receiving from other iwi.

It took several sittings to feed the large crown, with the main element of the hakari being the speciality of the marae, fresh patiki or flounder.


The Western Bay of Plenty Primary Health Organisation says National MP Tony Ryall is misrepresenting a programme which gives gym membership to Maori men at risk of heart disease.

Chief executive Roger Taylor says the PHO identified Maori men as having the highest risk of dying early from cardio-vascular disease.

It is offering free risk assessment checks to up to 900 Maori men aged between 35 and 45, and offering advice on nutrition and exercise.

Mr Taylor says the programme will be extended to other groups, according to their risk of heat disease.

“Tony Ryall in the last fortnight has this explained to him in detail and has had it explained to himm that this is a need-based approach, and that other at risk populations will, in due course, be got to, and yet he still went into the House yesterday and pretended he didn’t have that conversation, or didn’t know what he knew, and that’s why we are quite peeved, to put it bluntly,” Taylor said.

Roger Taylor says 80 men have been tested so far, with only two or three opting for gym memberships and others choosing other exercise options such as joining hapu based programmes or waka ama.


Maori language commission chief executive Haami Piripi says generational changes in pronunciation of te reo Maori are no cause for alarm.

Researchers from Waikato and Canterbury universities this week reported to the commission that young second language learners have a different approach to the language than older native speakers.

University of Waikato linguist Ray Harlow says many young people don't understand vowel length, so their words could be misunderstood.

Piripi says it is a problem which can be overcome.

It’s just really a question now of focusing now and encouraging learners of Maori not to stop at the point they think they have discovered their language but to proceed further and to delve and listen to their elders. We’ve got a lot of people starting at the thin end of the wedge. We’ve got to push a few more down the proficiency scale to the thick end of the wedge.” Piripi said.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Maori lawyers oppose claim deadline

The Maori Law Society says the Treaty of Waitangi claims process is moving along at a natural pace and there is no need for a deadline.

The Maori Purposes Bill now before Parliament will stop historical claims being lodged after September 2008.

Society spokesperson Jolene Patuawa says if the Government wants to speed up the claim settlement process, it should fund research for areas which have yet to lodge claims, such as Rangitikei, Horowhenua, Manawatu and Waikato-Raukawa.

Ms Patuawa says the deadline is politically motivated

“If we don't put out a final filing date on it, is this going to dribble on forever, and my answer to that is no, and it’s very important that the wider New Zealand public understands that, because the tribunal process does It has been closed off and you can’t then lodge further claims in respect of that issue,” Patuawa says.

Jolene Patuawa says the Waitangi Tribunal has made considerable progress in the 20 years that historical claims have been allowed.


A new diabetes research project is comparing the insulin resistance of young Maori and Aboriginal men.

The project is a joint initiative by Massey University's research centre for Maori health and development, Te Pumanawa Hauora, and the faculty of health sciences at Sydney University.

Research head Chris Cunningham from Ngati Raukawa says both groups are five times more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes than non-Maori.

Dr Cunningham says the researchers want to find out if the groups have a physiological resistance to insulin, which controls the way the body uses sugars.

“Trying to understand the process whereby fit young healthy people transfer to becoming not so healthy and developing diabetes in their 30s and 40s, which is earlier than Pakeha people,” Cunningham said.

Chris Cunningham says diabetes is a significant factor in the lower life expectancy of Maori men.


The Maori newspapers which thrived at the start of the land wars are the subject of book published this week.

Author Lachy Paterson says Colonial Discourses - Niupepa Maori 1955 to 1863 reveals a surprising diversity of opinion by Maori.

Dr Paterson, who lectures in Maori history at Massey University, says only one of the newspapers, the Kingitanga's Te Hokioi, was produced by Maori.

The rest were produced by missionaries or by the Government, but because they allowed letters to the editor, they offer a window into Maori thinking.

“Maori saw the newspapers, even ones put out by Pakeha, as a taonga. It was something they could read which was other than religious material, and they did appreciate them,” Paterson said.

Lachy Paterson says the newspapers stopped being produced after the invasion of the Waikato in 1863.


The Maori Law Society says a deadline on lodging historical treaty claims after September 2008 could harm the groups most affected by the colonial process.

The society made submissions yesterday against the change, which is contained in the Maori Purposes Bill now before Parliament.

Spokesperson Jolene Patuawa says there has been little outcry against the bill because the major tribal areas have their claims in the system or have already settled.

But Ms Patuawa says there are parts of the country which have not yet quantified the extent of their loss.

“The sad fact of the matter is the people most harshly affected by the Crown treaty breaches are the ones likely to be in this position where they’ve been so affected they’ve become disassociated from their land or landless. They’re the ones that are so affected they have not been able to lodge a claim,” Patuawa said.

Jolene Patuawa says there is no need for a deadline, because the Waitangi Tribunal process is working effectively to identify and hear claims.


The chief executive of the Tamaki Public Healthcare Organisation says increased funding for doctors who charge low fees should boost Maori health.

Guy Naden says many medical organisations working in low income communities will often waive fees for GP visits because their patients can't afford to pay.

Dr Naden says PHOs have been arguing that their healthcare model is saving money elsewhere in the system.

“We lobbied the minister and the ministry to increase the amount of moenhy going into these low low cost health practices, so from October 1 there’s an extra $11 million going into these providers that charge practically nothing,” Naden said.

Guy Naden says one size doesn't fit all in health, and targeted interventions are needed to make a difference.


Taitokerau iwi liason officer Paddy Whiu says the influence of American gangsta rap culture is affecting the way young people interact with police.

Mr Whiu says new street gangs are emerging which are having a negative effect on the behaviour of a generation of young Maori and Pacific island people.

He says Maori and Polynesian youth have cultures to be proud of, yet they mirror an alien street culture from the United States.

“Maori youth are modeling themselves on black America, but you also have to look at some of the videos and things you watch on tv, the movies, the violence, and you just got to think if they’re watching it, they’re going to do it, It’s a very big concern for us,” Whiu said.

Kaumatua supports taser trial

A Ngati Porou kaumaatua is supporting of the introduction of taser stun guns because they are better than the alternative.

Parekura Kupenga, an Auckland-based health worker, says getting a 50 thousand volt shock from a taser is a better option than a bullet.

He says the killing of Waitara man Steven Wallace in 2000 was a an example of what co go wrong when police rely on guns so subdue people they consider dangerous.

“Had the police used this type of gun at that time, perhaps Steven would still be alive today. I have always advocated in the past that this be the type of weapon the police use,” Kupenga said.

Parekura Kupenga says most police officers carrying guns aren't emotionally equipped to deal with the psychological after effects of killing someone.


Auckland academic David Williams says the WAI 260 flora and fauna claim hearings illustrate the problems Maori have with concepts of ownership rights.

Dr Williams, a senior law lecturer at Auckland University, says modern intellectual property law requires ownership to be established before ideas are used commercially.

He says many Maori feel uncomfortable claiming ownership of thingsm even if they can prove they have a cultural or historical connection.

“And if you come from the sort of cultural perceptions of matauranga Maori, where you say no one owns anything, we’re all a part of everything, that doesn’t give you the right to own things. You’ve got certain responsibilities and duties as kaitiaki and so on, but not ownership,” Williams said.

The Wai 262 hearing will continue at Tokomaru Bay tomorrow, and shift to Waipatu Marae near Hastings next week.


Sloppy pronunciation means there is a potential communication gap between old and young speakers of Maori.

Researchers from Waikato and Canterbury Universities are tracking the way different age groups speak te reo Maori.

Waikato linguistics lecturer Ray Harlow says because younger speakers almost always have English as their first language, they carry the underlying conventions of that language into Maori.

Dr Harlow says it can have a detrimental effect on pronunciation.

“Some people now are mixing up long and short vowels and are saying things like tiikanga instead of tikanga and taatari and taakoto instead of tatari and takoto. We believe it’s because as the long and shorts are coming closer together, people are starting to mix them up,” Harlow said.

Ray Harlow says if the trend continues, the shape of te reo Maori will be permanently affected and some words could be lost.


The head of one of the country's largest primary healthcare organisations says affirmative action is needed to lift the numbers of Maori working in the medical field.

Guy Naden from the Tamaki PHO says Maori initiatives have come under pressure since National Party leader Don Brash's Orewa speech attacked race based funding.

Dr Naden says unless problems are properly addressed, they won't be resolved.

“Affirmative action throughout the world is good for minorities and indigenous people, but the majority population see it as a threat and see it as being unfair. Really to address the inequties in the numbers, this type of action has to happen,” Naden said.

Guy Naden says a programme to increase the number of Maori and Polynesian students studying at Auckland University's Medical School is necessary and should stay.


A senior Maori police officer in Northland says young Maori should be careful when entering relationships with gang members.

Whangarei Police are looking for 31 year old patched gang member Nathan Fenton in connection with the death of 17 year old Mairina Dunn at a house at Otangarei on Sunday.

Taitokerau iwi liaison officer Paddy Whiu says it is a tragic case which illustrates the dangers of the gang lifestyle.

“This is the area for our uyung women, when they get into relationships like ths, like it’s hard for them to get out of, and we’ve seen it on many occasions, and sadly it has occurred to this young lady,” Whiu said.


Veteran songwriters Ngatai Huata and Mahinerangi and Rihitapuwae Tocker and have made the shortlist for the Maioha Award for best waiata section of the APRA Silver Scroll Awards.

They will be joined by newcomer Richard Randell Bennett at the awards ceremony in Auckland on Septermber the 20th.

Ruia Aperahama, the chairperson of award co-sponsor the Maori Music Industry Coalition, says the judges know exactly what thy're looking for.

“It is the excellence, the creativity and the innovation in the use of Maori language in songwriting. Those type of qualities the jusges were looking for. How well does the word and the composition blend together,” Aperahama said.

Ruia Aperahama says Maori language composition gets swamped by the English language music industry, and it needs all the acknowledgement it can get.

Taser trial racists says northern MP

Maori Party MP Hone Harawira says a trial of taser stun guns which starts this Friday is racist and potentially lethal.

Mr Harawira says the Police and their minister, Annette King, are playing down the risks of the weapons, which deliver a 50 thousand volt jolt.

But he says they gave the game away by choosing to conduct the one year trial in Counties Manukau, North Shore, Waitakere and Porirua.

“We're going ahead with the trial in South Auckland and in Porirua. Hello folks. This is an attack on blacks. This is what that taser stun gun trial is all about. It’s teaching Maori and Pacific Islanders that if they get out of line, they will get the zap. They certainly won’t be trialling in Remuera,” Harawira said.

Hone Harawira says there have been almost 200 taser deaths in the United States over the past six years.


Kahungunu chairperson Ngahiwi Tomoana says the iwi wants to find a new way to deal with health authorities in Hawkes Bay and Wairarapa.

The Kahungunu runanga yesterday launched its new Maori Relationship Board, through which Maori health professionals affiliated to the iwi will interact with the Hawkes Bay District Health Board.

The board is chaired by Tom Mulligan, who runs a Maori health providers as well as being a Crown appointee on the DHB.

Mr Tomoana says the iwi hopes the new board will be able to exert more influence at a planning and strategic level.

“In the past we’ve had memorandums of understanding and memorandums of this and memorandums of that, and we think MOU means Maoris obligated unnecessarily. Because there’s nothing you can swing on with those MOUs, there’s nothing you can sue on, there’s nothing you can get hard about,” Tomoana said.

Ngahiwi Tomoana says Ngati Kahungunu would rather deal with one big district health board in its rohe rather than the existing three.


Residents on the Coromandel Peninsula should be able to emulate the birdsong of surrounding forests, after a workshop with taonga puoro, or traditional Maori instruments.

The gathering in Whitianga next month will bring together some of the country's leading exponents of taonga puoro, including Richard Nunns, Rewi Spraggon, Horomona Horo and Hinewirangi Morgan.

Wananga organiser James Webster says the wananga will focus on showing participants how to make their own bird callers.

“The karanga manu, which is a small instrument that replicates different bird calls, the karanga weka, which is specific to the call of the weka bird, the poia whiowhio, which replicates the calling of the kereru. It’s also a way of reconnecting with those teachings about the forests and the birds and their habitat and the ecology of life as well,” Webster said.


Tainui is asking the media to stay clear of the first poukai since the death of the Maori Queen, Dame Te Atairangi Kaahu.

The poukai, at Whatapaka Marae on the southern shore of the Manukau Harbour tomorrow, is part of the regular round of hui held by the Kingitanga to discuss tribal affairs and remember their dead.

Tainui media spokesperson Moko Templeton says it is a time for the new Arikinui, Tuheitia Paki, his father Whatumoana Paki and the Tainui people to mourn away from the eyes of the nation.

“We didn't get that time to grieve like the motu did, like those who came through to the powhiri. This is now our chance to have with our king, with Tuheitia, with his immediate whanau, to see Whatu, to embrace Whatu, to kiss their mokopuna, and that’s the respect we’re asking the media to allow,” Templeton said.

Moko Templeton says the media ban will apply for the next few poukai.


Ngapuhi's claim process design group is meeting again today to map out how to get their claims before the Waitangi Tribunal.

The northern tribe has been criticised for its slow progress preparing for what could be the last major historical inquiry conducted by the tribunal.

But Ngapuhi Runanga chairperson Sonny Tau says the iwi was given two options.

“It's either the fast route, go straight to the Office of Treaty Settlements and settle for the money they’ve already got there for you, or you can have the hearings, and this process we are going through is about coming to terms with how we see the claims advancing to hearings.

Sonny Tau says as the largest tribe, Ngapuhi has to be sensitive to building broad support among its own people for the claims, and that can't be rushed.


Prime Minister Helen Clark says the government's housing policies are helping iwi who want to develop their own housing policies.

Ngati Kahungunu this week launched an ambitious plan to build up to 500 houses in Hawkes Bay and Wairarapa, including a 40-home papakainga development around a marae at Flaxmere.

Ngati Kahungunu chairperson says the iwi is using its own resources as well as tapping into government programmes, so the houses will be a mix of rental, and freehold.

Helen Clark says Labour has given people more options.

“Many in the Napier, Flaxmere, Hastings area in state rental housing would have had huge benefit from Labour’s dropping of state house rents when we came into government in 2000. And it’s worth pointing out that the mortgage guarantee scheme we’re operating through Housing New Zealand will also help Ngati Kahungunu people buy their own home,” Clark said.

Helen Clark says the government is also developing a shared equity scheme which could help low income people including Maori into their first homes.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Mangere too safe to sacrifice

Labour leader Helen Clark says she has no doubts Labour will retain Mangere, whoever is standing.

Sitting MP Philip Field is under increasing pressure over his dealings with constituents, and the Prime Minister has told him to think about his future as an MP.

While there have been suggestions Mr Field could run again as an independent, Ms Clark says as long as there has been a suburb called Mangere, there has been a strong Labour president in it.

“It's got to be remembered that the Labour vote in Mangere was higher than anywhere else in New Zealand at the last election. Now it’s important not to take anyone’s vote for granted, but the Mangere electorate is one that has benefited hugely from having Labour in government, and that will continue to be the case,” Clark said.

Helen Clark says the nine-month inquiry by Queens Counsel Noel Ingram showed a number of ways that Mr Field was working were not appropriate, and the party is trying to deal with that.


Ngapuhi won't be hurried just to please the Waitangi Tribunal or the politicians.

That's the response from Ngapuhi runanga chairperson Sonny Tau to the frustration expressed by tribunal member Ranginui Walker at the slow progress with northern claims.

Mr Tau says the tribunal is there to hear the claim, not to say what the claim should be.

He says it's important Ngapuhi historical grievances are heard and time should not be a factor:

We're not about to hurry our claims up to suit some political electoral agenda. We’ve been hurting since 1840 and it’s not going to change in one or two years just to suit some parliamentary process, and Ngapuhi is quite adamant about that,” Tau said.

Sonny Tau says the Ngapuhi claims design group is meeting for two days this week and should make progress.


The small East Coast settlement of Tologa Bay is planning a big bash for New Years Eve.

Local art group Toi Hauiti have pulled together resources and funding from groups such as Creative NZ and Ma Te Reo to put together its second Ruawa concert.

The line-up includes Whirimako Black, Ruia Aperahama, Ardijah, Tohu and hip hop MC Tyna Keelan.

Organiser Mark Kopua says the concert aims to promote kaupapa driven music.

“Maori kaupapa is the thing we want to push. To prmote also Maori bands. Although we have an international artists like Renee Geyer, our kaupapa is to push Maori groups who are pushing Maori kaupapa,” Kopua said.

Mr Kopua says the lead up to the concert will also include a New Year's Parade and free event through the main street of Uawa.


Waiariki MP Te Ururoa Floavell says the Office of Treaty Settlements dosn't seem to have a strategy to deal with iwi who won't join in with what it calls large natural groupings to advance their claims.

Mr Flavell says the amalgamation process was developed to speed up claims, but it is in fact shutting out many Maori groups.

The Government has signed a deed of settlement to settle Te Arawa land claims with Nga Kaihautu o Te Arawa, which represents about half the confederation's members.

Mr Flavell says the iwi and hapu who aren't members of Nga Kaihautu are trying to find out how much is left to settle their claim.

“ The crown is very reluctant, in fact has not and will not provide an amount of money. Why? Because it’s an easy way to put all the Maoris into one hat, give them one collective amount, and if they want to get out, leave the Maoris to scrap over it, and that causes further division,” Flavell said.

Te Ururoa Flavell says the mandating process for the Te Arawa settlement lacks any credibility.


The new Maori king, Tuheitia Paki, will attend his first poukai as Tainui Arikinui at Whatapaka Marae in south Auckland this Thursday.

Poukai are held on 29 marae affiliated to the Kingitanga and are the main forum for discssion of tribal issues.

Turangawaewae media liaison Moko Templeton says the event will be closed to media.

Ms Templeton says the media people needs to give the new Arikinui time to adjust to his new role.

She says other iwi also are expressing interest in becoming more involved with Kingitanga, but their time will come later.

“We're not saying no to that but us as ourselves, as guardians of the new king, as guardians of the Kingitanga, as the spearhead of moving this waka forward, we just want to make sure get it right first,” Templeton said.

Moko Templeton says Tuheitia Paki will be unavailable to media until the first anniversary of his coronation.


Te Arawa kapa haka Groups are trying to find their way back into the national performing arts competitions, Te Matatini.

But Trevor Maxwell from Ngati Rangiwewehi says there needs to be compromise on both sides before that can hppen.

The Te Arawa regional competitions were completed on the weekends despite the absence of previous national winners Ngati Rangiwewehi and Te Matarae I O Rehu.

Tuhourangi and Te Rau Aroha were selected to represent the region at next February's nationals.

Mr Maxwell says the boycotting groups asked Te Matatini's organising committee to allow the representative teams to be chosen from an invitational competition run last year, but this was turned down.

He says the groups are concerned Te Arawa is not being represented by its best talent.

Walden pushes for wardens’ autonomy from Maori Council

Maori Wardens' national president Peter Walden says he has come back for another term so he can win autonomy for the organisation.

The wardens come under the authority of district Maori councils.

Mr Walden says that might have worked when the Maori Welfare Act was written in 1962, but it doesn't work now.

He says both organisations will work better if they are separated.

“We want the district Maori council and Te Kaunihera Maori to get their act together, expand their membership and representation and get on and be the political fighting arm for Maori. We have a track record. Leave us to manage our own affairs. After 38 years we’ve earned the right,” Walden says.

Peter Walden says Maori Affairs Minister Parekura Horomia has indicated he is considering a change in status for the wardens.


Waitangi Tribunal claimant Maanu Paul says the case against the Crown in the WAI 262 fauna and flora claim is sounding very strong.

Mr Paul has joined the claim at a late stage as a representative for the Maori organic growers association, Te Waka Kai Ora.

He says he was impressed with the evidence presented last week in Mangere by northern claimants representing Ngati Kuri, Te Rarawa and Ngati Wai.

He says the tribes have a consistent message that the Crown has failed in its Treaty obligation to protect Maori interests in the natural world.

“Since the Crown has failed to actively protect them as people and them as part of the environment, then the Crown should provide compensation for the errors they have committed,” Paul said.

Hearings resume today in Tokomaru Bay, and move next week to Waipatu Marae near Hastings and in Nelson.


A hui of Ngapuhi elders has come up with a candidate to speak for iwi members living in Auckland.

The elders were concerned that too many people seemed to be speaking for the nation's largest iwi.

Hui spokesperson Wiremu Tairua says the consensus was that Corrections Department kaumatua John Komene should be the mangai or mouthpiece for Ngapuhi ki Tamaki on tribal matters.

“He knows the people in Tamaki and also he knows when he goes back to Ngapuhi he knows most of the people when Waitangi Day comes, and when he goes to Tainui. He represents the kaumatua to the police in Auckland. All of these things he is qualified to support the Maoris in Tamaki,” Tairua says.

Tairua says matters relating to the tribal homelands will be left to elders still living in the north.


Ngai Tahu kaumatua Sir Tipene O'Regan says Maoridom should not expect too much of the new Maori king in the early years of his reign.

The tribes including Ngai Tahu are discussing how they can support Te Arikinui Tuheitia Paki, and they have been invited to come together in November by Lake Taupo to discuss the formation of a representative Maori body for that purpose.

Sir Tipene says the prominent role assumed by the late Maori queen, Dame Te Atairangikaahu, was largely shaped by the people around her such as her brother Sir Robert Mahuta and by the Tainui and Maori renaissance.

“I wouldn't expect the new Tainui ariki, Tuheitia, to have that kind of influence for some years, and that tends to throw the spotlight back to Tuwharetoa and the extent to which the ariki of that tribe, Tumu te Heuheu moves into the role his late father had amongst my generation,” O’Regan said.

Sir Tipene O'Regan says Tuwharetoa from the central plateau has always had a uniting role within Maoridom.


Waitangi Tribunal member Ranginui Walker says there is growing frustration at the delays in hearing claims from Taitokerau.

He says the tribunal encourages natural groupings of tribes to group together to speed up the claims process, but many in the north seem to want to go it alone.

Dr Walker says the tribunal has had to postpone a judicial conference with on the northern claims because the claim design group headed by Te Runanga o Ngapuhi chairperson Sonny Tau hasn't made enough progress.

“They want to take charge of the process and lay down the kaupapa as to how the hearings will take place. They will come up with a hearings plan. The tribunal has conceded that, so the triubunal is waiting for Te Runanga o Ngapuhi to define how the hearings will proceed,” Walker said.

Ranginui Walker says unless progress is made soon, Ngapuhi risks not getting its claims heard at all.


A former union colleague of Taito Philip Field says it's time for the Mangere MP to walk.

Pressure in creasing on Mr Field as fresh allegations emerge about his dealings with constitutents and people seeking help with immigration.

Unite Union president Matt McCarten, a fellow organiser with Mr Field in the Service Workers Union, says Labour leader Helen Clark is making it very clear Mr Field is a problem she wants to go away.

“Clark has clearly withdrawn her support, so as far as a Labour MP goes, it's all over,” McCarten said.

Matt McCarten says Labour would easily retain Mangere is Field resigns.

Monday, August 28, 2006

National body needs narrow focus

Ngai Tahu leader Sir Tipene O'Regan says a proposed new Maori national organisation needs to be narrowly focused if it is to survive.

Tuwharetoa paramount chief Tumu te Heuheu has invited the tribes to Pukawa on the shores of Lake Taupo in November to discuss the formation of a body which can support the new Maori king, Tuheitia Paki.

Sir Tipene says Maori leadership needs to look to the lessons of the past when crating any new body.

“Things that we've tried to set up historically, the Maori parliaments, the New Zealand Maori Council (which is in fact a state creation), the New Zealand Maori Congress, they have all one way and another failed, and one of the reaons they have failed is because in my view they have tended to be too wide, too inclusive, too broad in their overall agenda,” Sit Tipene said.

Sir Tipene says Maoridom needs a place where it can develop consistent views on the place of the Treaty of Waitangi, the role of iwi in resource management and the sort of organisations structures which iwi need to move forward and create inter-generational wealth.


There are people within New Zealand First willing and able to replace Winston Peters, should he decide to stand down.

That's the view of Maori Affairs spokesperson Pita Paraone.

Party president Dail Jones has started sounding out people to lead the election into the 2011 election, when Mr Peters will be 66.

Mr Paraone says the party is in good heart.

“Amongst the present team there are two people there who have clearly put their hands up and are able to do the job, but in the meantime we only have one leader and we are quite happy with his leadership,” Paraone said.

The late Dame Te Atairangikaahu was remembered at the Aotea regional kapa haka competitions in Whanganui last weekend, as groups adapted their material to pay tribute to the Maori queen.

Whanganui group Te Matapihi took out the top position, and will be joined by Te Reanga Morehu o Ratana at the Te Matatini National Kapa Haka Festival next February.

Te Matatini chairperson Tama Huata says much of the material celebrated the whakapapa and shared history of the Wanganui, Taranaki, Waitara and Ratana areas.

“The Aotea regionals were fantastic. It was a wonderful hui and there was wonderful development of kapa haka and for all the groups involved. The winning groups, Te Matapihi and the group from Ratana certainly deserved to be in those top 2 positions,” Huata said.

Tama Huata says there will be a new award at next year's Te Matatini festival to acknowledge Maori composers and music icons.


A strike by workers at an Auckland Supermarket Distribution centre, has reached a standoff.

Staff at Progressive Enterprises in Mangere have been on strike since last week, seeking pay parity with other distribution centres run by the company in Christchurch and Palmerston North.

Syd Kepa, the apiha Maori for the National Distribution Union, says the workers, who are predominantly Maori and Polynesian, voted not to return to work at midday as intended, but to hold out until their demands are met.

He say the company have since met with Union delegates.

“ They've locked the workers out so it looks at this stage like an indefinte strike which means we’re not talking to each other. So it’s up to both parties, whoever chucks the towel in I guess,” Kepa said.


Waitangi Tribunal member Ranginui Walker says the Ngapuhi claims may never be resolved if claimants can't reach agreement between themselves.

The tribunal is postponing next month's judicial conference with the Ngapuhi claim design group, because not enough progress has been made.

Dr Walker says the tribunal encourages claimants to form natural groupings to make claims easier to handle, but this doesn't seem to be happening in Taitokerau.

He says Ngapuhi Runanga chairperson Sonny Tau must bear some of the responsibility.

“He hasn't yet come up with the strategy so the meeting before the end of the year has been postponed until next year, so we’ve lost a year already, and I’m becoming more pessimistic that, because we have other hapus standing out, we may never complete the Taitokerau hearing,” Walker said.


National Party broadcasting spokesperson Georgina te Heuheu says TVNZ isn't fulfilling its charter obligations by churning out reality and quiz shows.

Mrs te Heuheu says last week's shared coverage by TVNZ and Maori Television of the tangi for Te Arikinui Dame Te Atairangikaahu shows there is a demand for well-produced programmes which reflect the country.

She says TVNZ management should take note of the ratings for a uniquely New Zealand experience.

“We've had this whole run of shows, while they’re enjoyed by some, rally don’t fulfill the charter. Let’s hope, having seen the debacle of the last few years, they have learnt, and certainly take a lesson from the great coverage New Zealanders saw last week,” te Heuheu said.

Georgina Te Heu Heu says the ratings for the tangi coverage and for Maori Television's Anzac Day broadcasts show people are hungry for a uniquely New Zealand experience.

Kahungunu launches housing strategy

Te Runanga o Ngati Kahungunu is today launching a new strategy to put iwi members in their own houses.

Chairperson Ngahiwi Tomoana says the Hawkes Bay and Wairarapa iwi was keen to address its own housing needs rather than waiting for government agencies to help individual members.

He says the iwi has been building up expertise after first entering the new home market five years ago.

“One of our companies which is still operating under whanau has built over 100 houses now so we know it can be done, we know the mystery of the building industry can be taken on now, so institutionally we are going to take it on and put our people into houses,” Tomoana said.

Ngahiwi Tomoana says the scheme is called Te Paatu Watawata, because putting a whanau in its own house gives it the sort of security people used to seek from a fortified pa.


The re-elected president of the national Maori wardens association says rangatahi are signing up in large numbers.

Peter Walden was at the annual Maori wardens conference which finished in Rotorua over the weekend.

He says after 38 years, the wardens are seeking legislative changes allowing them greater autonomy.

Mr Walden says he was also encouraged by the fact almost a third of the 300 wardens at the hui were under 30.


The gap between Maori and Pakeha students is getting smaller, according to the National Education Monitoring Project.

The project samples Year four to Year eight students in 10 percent of schools across three curriculum areas.

Primary teachers’ union national president Irene Cooper says this year's data on mathematics, social studies and information access shows an improvement for Maori students.

She says the result could reflect an improvement in the way mainstream teachers are connecting with Maori students.

“The systems are bedding in. I think it means that we are building teaching capacity in teaching in te reo Maori. I think mainstream teachers are getting a handle too on connecting better with Maori students,” Cooper said.

Irene Cooper says Maori learners score well in areas that reflect their own life and culture.


The way has been cleared for Ngai Tahu to develop what is set to be the biggest farm on the North Canterbury plains.

The Environment Court has confirmed that Ngai Tahu Properties has priority access to water from the Waimakariri River.

The decision puts paid to a $350 million irrigation scheme proposed by Central Plains Water.

Ngai Tahu Properties chief executive Tony Sewell says it's a major operation to turn the former Eyerwell State Forest into a farm.

“We think we'll be developing for 20 years from the time we start converting to when we come out the other end with a fully fledged farming operation on 6500 hectares, and that’s a big farm, that will be the biggest farm on the plains of North Canterbury,” Sewell said.

Tony Sewell says Ngai Tahu is now working on an irrigation scheme and clearing the land.


Training and retaining staff took priority over recruitment, at the annual Maori principals’ hui, which wrapped up in Palmerston North over the weekend.

One hundred and twenty delegates from around the country met at the Rangimarie Marae to discuss ways to support Maori initiatives in both mainstream and kura kaupapa schools.

Convener Debbie Marshall Lobb, the principal of Te Kura Kaupapa o Manawatu, says while it there is a need to attract more Maori into the education sector, keeping existing talent is as important.

“What do we do to keep them there , to retain them, and what do we do to support them. Obviously you can’t divorce yourself from the fact we need more Maori educators in the system, that’s at another level, but I think we need to acknowledge, reward and support those that are already in the system,” Lobb said.


The head of Hawkes Bay iwi Ngati Kahungunu says a new housing scheme should improve the health of Maori in the region.

Ngahiwi Tomoana says the Te Paatu Watawata project will address a shortage of suitable accommodation in the area.

Mr Tomonana says the name refers to fortified pa and the protection they provided.

“Having a good house contributes to good health, good learning, security and confidence, so we see that as a crucial element, and one of the most and mysterious and hard fought investments of anybody, and if we can put that in front of or people, rebuild our patu watawata for each whanau,” Tomonana said.

Ngahiwi Tomoana says iwi need to find their own solutions to health and housing problems, rather than just accept what is offered by Crown agencies.