Waatea News Update

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

My Photo
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Friday, September 15, 2006

Arawa Lakes Settlement Act passes

Te Arawa Maori Trust Board chairman Anaru Rangiheuea says the passing of the Te Arawa Lakes Settlement Act is just the start of the hard work.

The Act gives Te Arawa title to the beds of the 13 lakes around Rotorua, although the Crown continues to own the water column and airspace in what it calls the Crown stratum above the beds.

The settlement also spells the end of the trust board in its current form, and a new Te Arawa Lakes Trust will managed the tribe's interests and the $10 million dollars in financial redress.

Mr Rangiheuea says he was elated by the settlement.

“I almost jumped out of my seat in Parliament. It was really an occasion to be remembered by Te Arawa. What we’ve got to do now is go back and get our legal people together to set up the structure, have elections for trustees, set up directors And get Te Arawa into the commercial business it will now be set up for,” Rangiheuea said.

Anaru Rangiheuea says Te Arawa plans a public celebration of the settlement in Rotorua towards the end of the year.


A set of medals belonging to one of the first volunteers to the 28 Maori Battalion, the late Te Maera Laddie Milner of Ngati Porou, has been returned to his whanau in an emotional ceremony at the Gisborne RSA.

The medals had been misplaced at the Napier Returned Services Association.

Son Geoff Milner says it was a real honour to get the medals back, and the family is now considering how they should be displayed, probably at Ruatoria or the Tairawhiti Museum.


A former winner says the standard of both English and Maori at the Manu Korero secondary school speech competitions has improved over the years.
Musician and broadcaster Ruia Aperahama was master of ceremonies at the event which finished in Opunake yesterday.
He says rangatahi are the future guardians of te reo Maori, and it's clear the language is in good hands.

“A lot of of the contestants that are coming through in the Maori section are kohanga reo graduates. So the fluency of Maori was exceptionally high, again when comparing back to my time, and that’s going back a few years, the eloquence and level of Maori and standard is also high and the young generation, I was just blown away by that potential,” Aperahama said.

Senior Maori and best overall winner was Hona Black of Hato Paora College in Feilding.

Aperahama says he's relieved many young Maori are choosing their taha Maori over the bling bling and hip hop of American culture.

“I saw a lot of young boys walking around with tokotoko and they were aspiring to be kai korero and kaumatua. I saw that as encouraging because our youth were putting value on those attributes that our old people were carrying for such a long time,” he said.


One of the country's longest serving bilingual units is celebrating its 20th anniversary.

Te Pua Waitanga o te Purapura Pai at Birkdale Primary School on Auckland's North Shore held a powhiri for former pupils this morning, and there's a dance tonight.

Principal Roger Shearer says the unit was started because the school saw the need to do something for the graduates of the neighboring kohanga reo. It now caters for about 80 students.

Mr Shearers says much of the success of Te Pua Waitanga comes from the support of parents and the commitment they have to their children’s education.

Roger Shearer says in its early years the bilingual unit created headaches for administrators, but recent policy changes mean it can now get properly funded.


Veteran police superintendant Pieri Munro will get a chance to put more than a decade's experience as general manager of Maori, Pacific and ethnic services to more practical use as he takes up his new job as Wellington District Commander.

Superintendent Munro, from Ngati Maniapoto, Ngati Ruanui, Ngaitahu and and Ngati Kahungunu will have close to 1000 staff under his command in one of the biggest districts in the country.

He says the capital will be a great place to apply his skills.

“I think the role here in terms of being Wellington District Commander puts me back into an operational focus. There are some real opportunities to take a lot of what I have been developing in the past, to blend and integrate that in terms of the Wellington District,” Munro said.

Pieri Munro begins his work in his new position on Monday.

Also starting a new job is Northland district commander Viv Rickard from Ngati Whakaue and Ngati Porou, who takes over responsibility for North Shore, Waitakere and Rodney.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Black grip on Manu Korero trophy maintained

Hato Paora student Hona Black maintained a family tradition by winning the Pei Te Hurinui Jones trophy for senior Maori at the annual Manu Korero speech competitions which finished yesterday in Opunake in South Taranaki.

His older brother, Whitiaua, won the coveted trophy three years in a row.

The Korimako senior English section was won by Tokoroa High School student Aiden Allen, while Matariki Cribb from Kokohuia School in Wanganui took home the Sir Turi Carroll award for junior English.

The Rawhiti Ihaka junior Maori section went to Kimiora Kaire Melbourne, a Year 9 student at St Josephs Maori Girls School in Hastings, who opened her speech with a mihi to the competiton.

The Manu Korero competitions are seen as a nurturing ground for future Maori leaders, with past winners including Donna Awatere, Shane Jones, Derek Llardelli and Willie Te Aho.

Next year’s host is Tamaki Makaurau.


Te Taitokerau MP Hone Harawira says all young parents need to held accountable for the financial responsibility of raising their children.

The Maori Party is backing the Child Support Amendment Bill, which allows more flexibility in the way arrears in liable parent payments are dealt with.

Mr Harawira says steep penalties can be daunting, and what's important is absent parents get used to paying.

Mr Harawira says many young people start families without considering the implications.

He says government is picking up the tab for too many absent fathers.


Maori Television will broadcast the Tongan King's funeral to Aotearoa.

Producer Wena Harawira says there will be live daily coverage of events leading up to the Tongan State Funeral on Tuesday on news programme Te Kaea, while weekly current affairs show Te Heteri will provide a half-hour tribute to the Tongan King on Wednesday.

Ms Harawira says a Maori audience will be interested in the similarities between Tongan and Maori funeral customs.

“We have a reporter here, Anzac Pikia. He is going to provide daily coverage right up to the state funeral on Tuesday for Tu Kaea. That’s looking at preparations for the funeral, looking at aspects of Tongan customs surrounding tangihanga that are quite similar to Maori anyway,” Harawira said.

Wena Harawira says the strong links between Maori and Tongan people were renewed during the recent tangi for Te Arikinui Dame Te Atairangikaahu.


Federation of Maori Authorities chief executive Paul Morgan says the postponement of a Massey University conference for Maori in agribusiness is a sign of the lack of coordination in the sector.

The third Te Ohu Whenua Hui a Tau was postponed because of lack of registrations.

Mr Morgan says universities, science organisations and government agencies all want to develop links to Maori agriculture and horticulture businesses, because they are a huge potential market for services.

He says at this time of the year Maori farming businesses are caught up in lambing, calving and reporting to their annual meetings of owners.

“With the busy programme that Maori authorities, Maori businesses have now, they’ve got a lot on their plate, a lot of these people are very much involved in their regional tribal affairs, so it’s only just part of the work that they do,” Morgan said.

Paul Morgan says one event Maori agribusinesses never miss is the Federation of Maori Authorities hui, which this year is in Rotorua in November.


The Maori Party is preparing to celebrate a year in parliament.

Co leader Peter Sharples says he's satisfied the party has made a solid contribution.

He says the three new MPs have been familiarising themselves with parliamentary processes, and while they haven't put up any bills yet, they have championed a Maori perspective on issues other parties raise in the house.

“Almost every event that happens here, there’s a Maori side to it. The only thing that we have not got involved in is this bickering that’s going on between the two main parties, each accusing the other of corrupt behaviour, and it wastes time and it contributes to the attitude that politicians can't be trusted,” Sharples said.

Lakes settlement stratum suspicions aired

Taitokerau MP Hone Harawira says the Te Arawa Lakes Settlement bill could set a precedent for future claims.

The bill is set for its third reading tonight.

Mr Harawira says the government is using the term a new term 'Crown Stratum' to deny Te Arawa the ownerhsip of the water in the Rototua lakes.
He says it's just word games which hide the government's real intentions.

“This hasn't been the case in any other settlement in the past. We want to know are they setting a new standard. Are they trying to say that this is how they are going to own all the water, by not owning the water but owning all the space in which the water sits. We think they should just front up and say we’re stealing the water folks and that is all there is to it,” Harawira said.

Treaty Negotiations minister Mark Burton says under common law, no one own water in its natural state, and the Maori Party is scaremongering.


The man behind a programme which is changing the way Maori students are taught in mainstream schools is denying it involves teacher-bashing.

Russell Bishop, the professor of Maori education at Waikato University, yesterday reported to a select committee on 
the Te Kotahitanga programme.

Te Kotahitanga has worked with 400 teachers over the past two years, and is being extended to cover 2000 teachers over the next year.

Professor Bishop, says there has been a significant improvement in the academic results among Maori students in schools runningthe programme.
He says it shows how teachers need to learn new skills and teaching methods to get the best out of Maori students.

“There's no point in saying current teachers are not up to it because they patently are up to it. Because we’ve showed in our project that by taking a random cross section of teachers, we’ve been able to support them in transforming their practice in the way they relate and interact with Maori children so they can bring about greater gains in achievement,” Bishop said.

Russell Bishop says Te Kotahitanga needs to be incorporated into the wider education sector rather than being treated like a limited pilot.


The small south Taranaki township of Opunake has been transformed this week as thousands of Maori flock in for the annual Nga Manu Korero secondary school speech competitions.

Taranaki resident Jamie Tuuta says the visitors have seen some of the best young speech makers in the country.

He says they should take home an understanding of some of the challenges facing Taranaki rural communities, and they will leave something behind.

”Opunake like many of our rural communities in Taranaki is really struggling. (Manu Korero) is huge in terms of the economic benefit to the town but also raising the awareness of Maori issues and Maori kaupapa amongst not only our own hapu and iwi here in Taranaki but also among the wider community,” Tuuta said.


Nelson Maori are talking with Tasman District Council on the future of a camping ground which is partly built on Maori land.

The council discovered at lease renewal time that a quarter of the one hectare Collingwood motor camp was on Maori land, but it has not paid rent.

Wakatu Incorporation chairperson Paul Morgan, a descendant of the original landowners, says it is the last remnant of the original native reserve and needs to be protected.

He says the issue has forced the council to reconsider its relationship with tangata whenua.

“It's like a lot of areas. The local people and leadership are essentially ignorant of the Maori history of the region and also the issues, so therefore they often make decisions about matters where there are misunderstandings created, and it makes for a difficult working relationship,” Morgan said.

Paul Morgan says the Maori incorporations are already significant ratepayers in the Nelson Golden Bay region, and the treaty settlements which should be struck over the next few years will have implications for future relationships.


Maori living on the South West Coast of the South Island have failed to stop the development of a giant new mussel farm.

The Ministry of Fisheries has approved an application for a 45 hectare mussel farm, a kilometre offshore from Jackson Bay, just north of Fiordland.

Te Runanga O Makaawhio opposed the development, because of concern at possible damage to traditional food gathering areas.

Richard Wallace, the deputy upoko for the runanga, says he saw the damage done by marine farming further up the island.

“The long term effects is the areas where those farms are, they deplete the natural stock of the mahinga kai, they capture the spat, and I guess the long term effects of that is the stock becomes depleted. And it’s a beautiful mussel down there, a beautiful kukupa,” Wallace said.

Richard Wallace says Te Runanga o Makaawhio has no current plans to move into aquaculture itself.


Students and staff from Auckland University of Technology's Maori department Te Ara Poutama and high profile sports people like Warrior Wairangi Koopu and former all black Glen Osborne took to Queen St this morning to promote Maori language.

They handed out pamphlets to morning commuters promoting Maori language day and free maori courses at AUT.

Tutor Julian Wilcox says the action was a tribute to the original Maori Language Day inn 1972.

That was when Hannah te Hemara Jackson from Nga Tamatoa presented a 30,000 signature petition to then Maori Affairs Minister Matiu Rata asking for Maori be taught in schools.

What became Maori language week was later shifted July, so as not to interfere with preparation for tertiatry exams.

Mr Wilcox says there was a positive respoinse from morning commutrs to the action.

Ginger group success lauded

A ginger group which grew out of last year's Hui Taumata Maori economic development summit is proving to be an effective way to initiate new programmes.

The government says it will spend another $2 million dollars keeping the Hui Taumata Taskforce going for another year.

Taskforce deputy chairperson Ngatata Love says the taskforce has a very small secretariat, so it has lower overheads and can move much faster than government agencies like Te Puni Kokiri.

“This is outside government, We don’t want to be responsible to government. You look at the uniqueness of this group. We’re talking about the head of business New Zealand, the head of the Roundtable, the head of the trade union movement, coming together with Maori to make things happen, and that’s pretty exciting,” Love said.

Ngatata Love says the money will go on spreading its Maori governance training framework and developing programmes for entrepreneurship, workforce productivity and youth leadership.


The head of the Stroke Foundation say Maori need to identify culturally appropriate resources for their people.

Mark Vivian says more than 50 thousand New Zealanders are dealing with the aftermath of strokes, and a further 8 thousand a year have strokes.

The rate of strokes is declining in the non Maori population, but going up in Maori communities because of higher rates of smoking, poor diet and lack of exercise.

Mr Vivian says there are more than 70 stroke support clubs in the country, but many of them need help providing appropriate assistance to Maori.

“It would be really worthwhile for there to be some evaluation of that are the distinctive needs for Maori, living life after stroke. I think it would be sill for a predominantly Pakeha organisation to decide for Maori what would be the really smart ways for responding in a Maori context for Maori” Vivian said.


Youth Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta says Maori communities need to be more active in modelling responsible drinking behaviour to their young people.

Ms Mahuta says Maori need to make their views known to the steering group which is looking into regulations around alcohol advertising.

But she says while advertising is designed to be effective, what young people see in their local communites can also make an impact.

“If kids see their uncles and aunties or older cousins going out and getting rotten, it’s certainly not a good signal. I do know a lot of communities have taken charge of this and are adop[ting more responsible drinking behaviour. Say in sports clubs, trying to model better behaviour, trying to say this is unacceptable if you abuse alcohol,” Mahuta said.

Nanaia Mahuta says young Maori in their 20s and 30s are often better role models for drinking behaviour than the older generation.


Members of the family of the late Te Arikinui Dame Te Ata-i Rangi Kaahu will be heading for Tonga to atend the funeral of King Taufa’ahau Tupou IV next Tuesday.

A group from Tainui was at Whenuapai Airport yesterday to farewell the air force plane taking the King's body back to his homeland.

Tainui MP Nanaia Mahuta says while the kaahui ariki or Kingitanga royal family will be represented, it is unlikely King Tuheita will travel to the island kingdom.

“ There are formal protocols between ourselves and Tonga regarding being able to receive the new king of Tonga in the most appropriate way here in New Zealand, and vice versa for them receiving King Tuheitia, so those protocols will be observed at a later date,” Mahuta said.

Nanaia Mahuta says extra flights are being put on to ensure all the people who need to attend the funeral will be able to get there.


Maori are being urged to take the skills they pick up in the non government not-for-profit sector and use them as a springboard into business.

Manuka Henare, the associate dean of Maori and Pacific Development at Auckland University, says many Maori are hesitant to get into business because they are afraid of failure.

He says many end up in the not for profit sector.

“You think of all the many non-profit organisations, the country is full of them, and Maori are very active in these things, and do very well in this area. There’s not much difference between being involved in not for profits and being involved in an arganisation that is for profit, you have to take risks,” Henare said.

Manuka Henare says in the non-profit sector, you are often only as good as your last fundraising effort.


Weavers are working with plant and soil scientists to capture the traditional knowledge about harakeke, kiekie and other flaxes used for traditional weaving.

Tina Wirihana from weavers group Te Roopu Raranga Whatu o Aotearoa says interviews for the Nga Tipu Ngaranga mo Tua Ake project are almost complete, and the team is now looking at compiling the material in book form.

Ms Wirihana says the end users may not be the weavers but the people who ensure the flaxes survive in the wild, or are planted where they can be harvested by weavers.

She says they need to understand the culture and science around the plants.

“It's an understanding of the tikanga and the matauranga pertaining to the kaitakitanga af the weaving plants, and really looks at the ecology and the growing of the weaving materials and how it impacts on different areas around the motu,” Wirihana said.

Tina Wirihana says the weavers are working with researchers from Christchurch University and Manaaki Whenua Landcare Research, and the project is funded by the Foundation for Research, Science and technology

$2 million more for Hui Taumata Taskforce

The government is putting a further $2 million into the Hui Taumata Taskforce.

The taskforce, headed by former governor general Sir Paul Reeves, was set up after last year's Maori economic development summit.

It has been working on a range of projects to increase workplace productivity, build partnerships between Maori and non-Maori businesses, enhance Maori leadership and governance, and promote entrepreneurship.

Maori Affairs Minister Parekura Horomia says results have been positive so far, and the extra funding to extend the life of the taskforce another year should maintain that momentum.

He says partnerships, networking and collaboration are critical for Maori development.


Labour list MP Dave Hereora says MPs are trying hard to restore some order to Parliament.

Question time has been particularly rowdy over the past couple of weeks, leading minor parties to threaten to walk out.
New Zealand First MP Pita Paraone has suggested marae protocols should be introduced in the House.

But Mr Hereora says parties need to show more respect for each other.

He says it's been a frustrating time for MPs.

“Nobody was getting any satisfaction over the intent of question and answer time, and that is to hear the question and hear the appropriate answer. So you would have heard today that there would have been quite a substantial change in the chamber. That was a result of the Speaker getting the whips together and just nutting through how we would best be heard in the house,” Hereora said.

Dave Hereora says the unrest wasn't helped by the extremely controversial nature of many of the issues being discussed.


Traditional weavers are pooling their knowledge to ensure there will be ample supplies of weaving material for the future.

The Nga Tipu Ngaranga mo Tua Ake project is funded by the Foundation for Research, Science and technolgy ands brings together the weavers' association Re Toopu Raranga Whatu o Aotearoa, Christchurch University and Manaaki Whenua Landcare Research.

Weavers' deputy chairperson Tina Wirihana says some fascinating material has been unearthed about how weavers find out the best time to harvest species, including one tale about the native rat and the kiekie.

“Once the kiore has feasted on the uri of the kiekie, the fruits of the kiekie, then it’s time when we as weavers can go in and harvest,” Wirihana said.

Tina Wirihana says interviews with hapu and iwi sources are almost complete, and the the project team is now looking at compiling the material in book form.


Hui Taumata Taskforce deputy chairperson Ngatata Love is welcoming a further $2 million in government funding.

Maori Affairs Minister Parekura Horomia says the funding will support the taskforce for a further year so it can consolidate some of the intitiatves which came out of last year's Maori economic development summit.

Professor Love says the taskforce brings together Maori, business and union leaders to find effective ways to take Maori forward.

He says it has the ability to change the way Maori work.

“ We've developed a leadership and governance model for Maori development entities ranging from the marae through to the corporations and trusts which really needs to be incorporated in the programmes now being offered in universities and the Institute of Directors. We’re working through that because the reality was a lot of the training was not addressing key issues,” Love said.

Ngatata Love says the taskforce is also working on entreprenurship programmes, workforce productivity and youth development.


The head of the Stroke Foundation says strokes are becoming an increasing burden on Maori families.

Stroke Foundation chief executive Mark Vivian says 8 thousand New Zealanders have strokes each year.

He says the rate of stokes is going down in the non Maori population, but it is on the increase among Maori because of lifestyle issues like diet, smoking and lack of exercise.

Mr Vivian says strokes affect the whole whanau as members take on caregiving roles.

“And there's a real pressure then comes on whanau to provide the unpaid supports to people. Government needs to realise that there’s a wealth of unpaid care and support that goes into stroke survivors,” Vivian said.

Mark Vivian says the Stroke Foundation is looking for ways to be more relevant to Maori


A new whanau literacy programme is helping children help their parents to read.

Bronwyn Yates, the tumuaki of Literacy Aotearoa, says parents are attracted to the programme because they want to encourage their children to learn.

She says the relationship is mutually fulfilling.

“The most exciting part about whanau family literacy is not only that the parent learns to love learning and increase literacy skills , the children are actually inspired by their parent, and start to feel challenged about how good they can achieve at school,” Yates said.

Bronwyn Yates says the whanau literacy programme is a New Zealand adaption of one developed by the United States-based Family Literacy Centre.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Skill increase vital for Maori economy

Council of Trade Unions president Ross Wilson says increasing the skill levels of Maori workers is vital for the economy.

Mr Wilson, who is a member of the Hui Taumata Taskforce, says young Maori and Pacific Islanders will be a major part of the future workforce, so the country needs to invest in developing their skills.

The taskforce grew out of last year's Hui Taumata Maori economic development summit, which looked at developing Maori enterprise, capital and people.

Mr Wilson says it became clear the people were the most important.

"The major assets are the people. In developing enterprise, you actually have to develop the people. The key asset for Maoridom in Maori business is in fact the Maori workforce," Wilson said,

Ross Wilson says skill development programmes need to incorproate kapapa Maori to instil a sense of pride in Maori workers.


Some of the korowai locked up in the world's museums may be about to give up their secrets.

The Marsden Fund for scientific research has granted three quarters of a million dollars for a project which will extract DNA from kiwi and dogskin cloaks and flax kete.

Massey University scientist Leon Huynen says Maori weavers' group Te Roopu Raranga Whatu o Aotearoa is giving guidance on what taonga to test.

Dr Huynen says there is a lot of knowledge which can come from the tests.

"Taking the kiwi as an example, a lot of the Maori cloaks are made from kiwi feathers. Not many people know how many kiwi were used to make a cloak. Are the feathjers from different geographical areas in New Zealand, which is one of the more interesting things, If that were the case, perhaps kiwi feather were traded among certain iwi for the purposes of cloak making," Huynan said.

Leon Huynan says the DNA testing only requires a small amount of organic material, so the cloaks will not be damaged.


The East Coast has its own version of the Oscars.

Tonight Ruatoria will host the Ngati Awards, at which Ngati Porou honours the work of its rangatahi in film, websites, graphics and other digital arts.

Te Runanga o Ngati Porou spokesperson Nori Parata says the awards, which are in their third year, are open to all 19 schools in the rohe.

She says the numbers taking part and attending the Ngati Festival awards ceremony and exhibition are growing.

Nori Parata say the Ngati Festival, which is backed by the runanga and the Education Ministry, also includes an ICT challenges, where schools from Potaka in the north to Whangara in the south are given three hours to solve an information and communications technology challenge.


The prime minister says it is unlikely parliament will adopt marae protocols to curb unruly behaviour.

New Zealand First Maori affairs spokesperson Pita Paraone, has suggested MP's look to tikanga maori, as a guide to appropriate behaviour in the debating chamber.

He says on marae speakers are not subject to the interruptions and interjections prevalent during question time.

But Helen Clark says marae are not always the polite forum some people like to portray them as.

"Parliament's a completely different settingh, isn;t it, and the marae has its own setting, and I might say people aren't always courteously received, speaking for personal experience. But with respect to Parliament, there has been an attempt by the National Party to shut Parliament down. Every time I've got to my feet to answer a question, I have been screamed at," Clark said.

Clark says National's deputy leader and Maori affairs spokesperson Gerry Brownlee is the worst offender.


Maori patients should have more confidence in the medical services available in the community.

Hineroa Hakiaha from the New Zealand Nurses Organisation says moves to cut the waiting lists of public hospitals, are pushing more Maori towards community based medical practitioners.

She says that should help overcome a common Maori belief they can only get the care they need in a hospital.

"The services are out there for our whanau to use and get better care where you donlt take up a bed that's going to be better for someone else in the hospital. We have the skills where someone can be looked after in the community as wll. It's thjat old whakaaro that we need to stay in the hospital and get well there. It doesn't happen like that anymore," Hakiaha said.

Hineroa Hakiaha says medical facilities in the community are now state of the art.


Tuhoe patriot Tame Iti says his new exhibition, Lest We Forget, aims to remind people of the injustices Tuhoe has endured for more than a century.

The paintings on black building paper use some of the evidence presented by Tuhoe to the Waitangi Tribunal.

Iti says he feels a responsibility to put his brush to work expressing the hurt felt by his people.

"Painting always picking in the middle of my head, so my job is to get it out of my head or out of my ngakau and wairua and get it out there. The work itself is round the issue of what Tuhoe has been talking about for over one hundred years," Iti said.

His exhibition.. Lest We Forget is at the Te Karanga Gallery at 208 Karagahape Rd in Auckland.

King of Tonga mourned

Prime Minister Helen Clark says the late king of Tonga should be remembered as a man who sought peace and stability for his country, while also retaining its cultural heritage.

The Prime Minister visited the royal residence in Epsom today, along with Maori Affairs Minister Parekura Horomia, Pacific Island Affairs Minister Phil Goff and associate minister Luamanuvao Winnie Laban.

Ms Clark says the King Taufa'ahau Tupou IV's decision earlier this year to replace one of his sons as Prime Minister with a commoner, Dr Fred Savele, ensures there should be an orderly transition in the island Kingdom.

"I think there is a lot of peaceful change going on in Tonga, to turn it into a constitutional monarchy with full democracy flourishing underneath as we know in our own country with the queen as head of state and a full democracy flourishing. So watch this space with Tonga," Clark said.

A Tainui group lef by King Tuheitia also visited the royal residence this afternoon and delivered a lengthy poroporoaki for the late king.


The surprise omissions of two star Maori players from the All Black training squad for next year could benefit the Maori team.

Rico Gear and Luke McAllister were left out of the 22 man squad who will undergo a special conditioning programme in preparation for the World Cup.

Maori Coach Donny Stevenson says the his side will welcome both players with open arms if they are available for any games next year:


Tuhoe patriot Tame Iti is adament his aartworks are for everyone.

The outspoken Tuhoe protester launches his latest art exhibition in Auckland this evening.

The collection is called Lest We Forget and is based on evidence presented by Tuhoe to the Waitangi Tribunal.

Iti says the 30 pieces on black building paper he produced for the exhibition are affordable by Maori.

"Many Maori in fact buy art. There's many fancy Maoris. Even some real fancy Maoris down south Auckland will buy a painting. Gone are the days when the perception that Pakehas are the only buyers of artwork, those days are gone. Even if you spend $10 on art piece, you can buy my little spit on it," Iti said.

Tame Iti says his art is part of his resistance to the Crown's assertion of control over Tuhoe lands.


The president of the Council of Trade Unions says improving Maori skill levels is critical to increasing the number of Maori in work.

Ross Wilson says he agrees with criticism from Business Roundtable head Rob McLeod that politicians can't celebrate lower overall unemployment unless they do something more about Maori unemployment, which remains above 8 percent.

But he says Mr McLeod's prescription of ditching the minimum wage and putting new employees on probation is all wrong.

Mr Wilson says people need to be properly prepared for the workforce.

IN: It's skills that will actually secure jobs. It's approprriate skills that will get the higher paying jobs. So it's really important that we - New Zealand as a whole - makes that investment in ensuring that Maori workers and particularly young Maori workers, get the skills to get the jobs," Wilson said.

Ross Wilson says the Hui Taumata Taskforce, which both he and Mr McLeod are on, has identified a skilled Maori workforce as being critical to the success of Maori business and enterprise development.


National MP Tau Henare says state houses are not the answer to the shortage of housing in Northland.

The former minister for Maori affairs says state houses lock many Maori families into a lifetime of renting.

He says whanau should be looking for ways to build their own homes.

Mr Henare says whanau who own their own homes are more likely to take better care of them than state house renters.

"The way to do it is to get people to take care of their houses, take pride in their houses. We can house ourselves on papakainga, on all the Maori land that we still own. If we rely too much on state hosuing, what we do is become beholden to the government." Henare said.


Ngati Porou is encouraging its tamariki to embrace digital and electronic media.

The East Coast iwi is holding its third Ngati Festival showcasing the creations of high school students in the region.

At a gala evening in Ruatoria tomorrow night, Ngati Awards will be given for the best short fiction and documentry films, animated film, poster, website, and music video.

Te Runanga o Ngati Porou spokesperson Nori Parata says the iwi's youth need to be ready for whatever the future brings.

"We're trying to prepare learners for the 21st century, and we also want our children in Ngati Porou to take their Ngati Poroutanga into the 21st century so we're trying to combine both the learning outcomes under the one umbrella," Parata said.

Nori Parata says the Ngati Awards have become a highlight of the year on the coast.

Harawira self-muzzled says leader

Maori party co-leader, Tariana Turia says she cannot take the credit for having achieved what few have been able to do.

That is to muzzle outspoken MP Hone Harawira.

Mr Harawira was uncharacteristically quiet at a media conference where the party outlined its new policy on accepting koha.

The conference was called after Mr Harawira had tried to defend Labour MP Philip Field by saying he himself had accepted cash koha from supporters.

Mrs Turia says it was the Taitokerau MP's decision to keep mum.

"He made the choice himself. He'd said what he believed he had a right to say, and that he would withdraw from saying anything else. And the party accepted that," Turia said.


A lack of financial literacy is keeping some Maori in the poorhouse.

That's the word from Juan Aspinall, who hosts Mahi Nui, a business programme on Maori radio.

A study by the Retirement Commissioner has found people from poorer areas and 60 percent of youth have little understanding of how to deal with financial institutions including banks, moneylenders and credit agencies.

Mr Aspinall says that makes them vulnerable to manipulation by unscrupulous lenders or scam merchants.

He says the place to start addressing it is in the school system.

"The environment is very important. The treaty is very important. But to pay their bills, to keep the wolf from the door, they need financial literacy. It's a no brainer. Whay are they not putting the emphasis they need to put on it," Aspinall said.

Juan Aspinall says while some elite schools now run financial or entreprenurial programmes, it is not happening enough in the poorer areas where students need the extra help.


A Rotorua school's battle to put the word 'Kura' on its school bus has won it a nomination for this year's Maori Language week awards.

The awards are the Maori language commission, Te Taura Whiri''s way of recognising effort and achievement in promoting te reo Maori.

Hawea Vercoe, the principal of Te Kura O Rotoiti, says he is thrilled by the nomination.

The winners will be announced this Thursday in Wellington.


The convenor of the national secondary schools speech competitions says people recognise the event as a stepping stone for future Maori leaders.

Nga Manu Korero starts in Opunake today, bringing together the 52 winners of the regional speech contests compete for awards in both te reo Maori and English speechmaking.

Organiser Rawiri Tinirau says past Nga Manu Korero award winners have included former ACT MP Donna Awatere and fisheries commission chair and now Labour MP Shane Jones.

"And other names that spring to mind are people like Willie Te Aho, Derek Llardelli, Julian Wilcox, and a host of other people that have come through this competition, and you just look at what they've gone on to do and it's remarkable, and I konw the rangatahi that compete this year will go on to do great things just like them," Tinirau said.

Rawiri Tinirau says the eight iwi of Taranaki have come together to house and feed the thousands of whanau and supporters expected in Taranaki for the competition.


A new way of scheduling the Te Matatini national kapa haka competiton has left some of the top teams concerned they won't get a chance to show off their best moves.

Instead of spreading the previous finalists evenly among the three competition pools, places for February's finals in Palmerston North were chosen at random from the regional competiton winners.

The result was five of the top teams will slug it out in pool A, with only two going through to the final six.

Kingi Kiriona from Waikato kapa haka Te Iti Kahurangi, says the process was transparent, but concerns will remain about its fairness.

"The draw was done on the agreement of the delegates we all chose at regional level. Morally or personally there could be (questions), but that could be because we have become so reliant on the top six system over the years," Kiriona said.

Te Matatini is already shadowed by a boycott from the top Te Arawa groups over a dispute with chairperson Tama Huata.


Jono Gibbes' decision to stay in New Zealand could be good news for the Maori rugby team, according to coach Donny Stevenson.

The Maori skipper has signed a new three year deal with the New Zealand Rugby Union, turning down an offer to finish his playing career in Wales.

Coach Stevenson says New Zealand rugby can't afford to lose someone of Gibbes' calibre:

"We're really rapt because if the All Blacks don't want him, certainly the Maoris will be rapt to have him becuase he's such and influen tiual leader and he was a big part of our success this year. We're just glad he's still in New Zealand and hopefully he has an opportunity to play for us, but clearly he wants to make the world cup team," Stevenson said

Monday, September 11, 2006

Te Matatini draw leaves crowded pool A

Some of the country's top kapa haka groups will be out in the first round in a draw prepared for next February's Te Matatini national competiton.

In past years, immediate past finalists were evenly spread among the three pools, meaning the strongest six teams were likely to do battle on the third day of the event.

This time the pools were chosen at random, and five of the top teams have ended up in pool A.

Kingi Kiriona, a tutor for Waikato kapa haka Te Iti Kahurangi, says he won't let the draw faze him, as the battle to the finals is never easy.


A south Auckland health worker says the government needs to make sure a new cervical cancer vaccine is accessible to Maori.

Kim Wii, a nurse at Turuki Healthcare, says the $450 price tag for the Gardasil vaccine treatment will mean it is unaffordable for many Maori women.

Between 50 and 100 women die each year from cervical cancer.

Gardasil is causing controversy overseas because it has been cleared to be given to girls as young as nine.


Maori educationalist Wiremu Doherty says changes in pedagogy are the key to improving the achievement of boys at high school.

National's education spokesperson MP Bill English has expressed alarm at the fact 50 per cent more girls than boys gained university entrance last year.

Mr Doherty, the head of Maori studies at Manukau Institute of Technology, says the needs of boys are different to those of girls - as are those between Maori and Pakeha students.

Mr Doherty says that those differences must be recognised and changes made in teaching practice:


Tainui elders are discussing their response to the death overnight of the King of Tonga, Taufa'ahau Tupou IV.

It's likely the new king, Tuheitia, will go to Tonga for the funeral.

Representatives of the Tongan Royal family attended the tangi of the late Maori queen, Dame Te Atairangikaahu, and gifted a ceremonial tapa for her burial.

Tainui chairperson Tukoroirangi Morgan says the ariki families of the Pacific maintain their links with each other.

Tukoroirangi Morgan says Dame Te Atairangikaahu, was a frequent guest at major state events held by King Tupou .


A New Zealand lawyer who was in New York on September the 11th five years ago says the terrorist attack on the World Trade Centre needs to be seen in its proper context.
From his office window, Tama Potaka could see the iconic towers burning and eventually falling.

He says anyone who was in the city will remember that day.

But Mr Potaka says people should not forget the suffering and devastation in other parts of the world.

Tama Potaka says the American response to 9 - 11 has not made the world a more peaceful or stable place.


Surf Highway in South Taranaki will well travelled over the next couple of days as Maori converge on the seaside town of Opunake for the annual national Maori secondary schools' speech competetions, Nga Manu Korero.

Rawiri Tinirau, who is co-ordinating the event, says the competition remains a forum that helps nurture future Maori leaders.
52 rangatahi, winners in the 14 regional comps held around the country will give prepared and impromptu speeches in both te reo Maori and English.

Mr Tinirau says each competitor brings both whanau and school supporters, so pressure is on to find accomodation in the region.

The powhiri is being tomorow at the Sanfords event centre in Opunake, and the competition proper kicks off Wednesday morning.

Bad things happen to bad Maori - Tamihere

Former Labour MP John Tamihere says the Maori Party’s opposition to taser trials by the police is a protest for protest’s sake.

He says the Maori party's accusation that police are being racist by choosing areas with high Maori and Pacific Island populations for the year long trial is misguided.

Police used a taser for the first time on the weekend on an 18-year old man in Tuarangi Rd, Auckland, who was wielding a weed-eater.

Mr Tamihere says the taser stun guns, which deliver a 50 thousand volt shock, are a better alternative to a bullet.

He says the challenge to Maori is not the taser, but to lower the Maori crime rate.

“The challenge for the Maori Party is as it is for all Maori, to stop doing crime. Our criminality means that we come to the attention of the criminal justice system and therefore policing methodology way out of kilter to our numbers. As a consequence our relationship with police is not good. But it’s not good because we are not good,” Tamihere said.

He says the Maori Party overreacted.

“Well course they have. It’s just a simple knee jerk response. If you’re in the protest movement and you’re good at protesting against everything, this is what you protest against,” Tamihere said.


More specialist wananga are planned to maintain the momentum from a hui in Whitianga over the weekend.

James Webster says the weekend wananga on the use of traditional Maori instruments, taonga puoro, attracted more than 50 people keen to learn about the ways to emulate the sounds of native birdsong.

He says the students were taken into the bush to identify the various leaves traditionally used to mimic the sounds of the birds in the bush.

It will be a catalyst for more specialised taonga puoro workshops..


A new book aims to shed light on the history of marae on the East Coast.

Meeting houses of Ngati Porou o Tairawhiti, was written by David Simmons, a pakeha author who took 30 years collating material for the book.

He says he was invited to do so by Ngati Porou kuia, Ngoi Pewhairangi, who introduced him to people to interview and approved him researching and photographing the marae of the region.

Mr Simmons says he tried to make the book as comprehensive as possible, covering all 49 marae, including some houses which are no longer there.


PHARMAC, the Pharmaceutical Management Agency, are holding 'He Rongoa Pai, He Oranga Whanau', a 2 day educational programme which starts in Waitangi today, to explore how Maori use medicines.

The noho at Te Tii Marae is part of 6 pilot programmes, being staged in co-operation with Mauri Ora Associates.

It is aimed at supporting Maori Health workers to develop strategies to encourage whanau to safely and effectively use medication and rongoa.

The hui will evaluate the current state of Maori Health, and the use of rongoa, or Maori traditional medicines, within Maori communities.

It will also examine why many Maori fail to complete the courses of medication prescribed by their doctors.


The organiser of a taonga puoro wananga held in Whitianga over the weekend, says it was an honour to have had the support of rangatira who specialise in the use of Maori traditional instruments.

James Webster says the two day wananga focused on birdcalls, and brought together some of the foremost exponents of Maori traditional music.

He says it was the first time a specialist wanaga has been held to recreate sounds of our native birds, and the hui was honoured that Brian Flintoff, Richard Nunns and others responsible for the resurgence in the use of Taonga Puoro were able to take part.