Waatea News Update

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Saturday, October 28, 2006

Horomia gives his party the big tick

The Minister of Maori Affairs expects a good scorecard for the Government's handling of Maori issues when the party faithful gather for their annual conference in Rotorua this weekend.

Parekura Horomia says the party will review its performance over the first year of a new term, and he's satisfied Maori have been well served by his party during that time.

He says more Maori are employed or staring their own businesses, and they are graduating from tertiary institutions in unprecedented numbers.

Mr Horomia says that has been achieved in a relatively short time.

“When we came in six years ago there were a whole lot of things to unbundle because the National Party had sold a lot of state houses, so they put pressure on housing for Maori, but I certainly think it has been one of the strongest performances for Maori across all issues for the past 20 or so years,” Horomia said.

The Maori Party will also be holding its conference in Christchurch this weekend.


Maori opposed to the development of a marine education and aquarium development on Wellington's south coast will appeal the granting of a resource consent by the Wellington Regional Council.

Toa Waaka from Save the Point dot com, who organised a peteition against the development, says it is a threat to the rights of tangata whenua to collect kai from their traditional mahinga kai.

Mr Waaka says Wellington's south coast is not the place for such a centre.

“We're not dead set against a marine education centre or an aquarium. It’s just its location, and being on the south coast, children can learn a lot more from being on the foreshore, in the rocks and looking at things in a natural environment, not in an controlled and human environment,” Waaka said.


A marathon set to test the endurance of New Zealand's best Waka Ama crews may cause a few waves.

Tomorrow's Sugarloaf Iron Ocean race is over a 30 kilometre course from Tutukaka to the Sugarloaf or Kaimata rock and back to shore.

Coordinator Ralph Ruka says 13 crews have confirmed for the Open and Master's Mens and Women's Sections, and competitors have undergone months of endurance preparation.

Mr Ruka says it's not for the faint hearted.

“This is the only open water race in New Zealand for waka ama. A lot of the long races we do have are mostly in harbours. It’s definitely not for the faint hearted, so we are scrutinising paddlers so we know they can go the distance,” Ruka said.

Ralph Ruka says the coastguard is on board for the Sugarloaf Iron Ocean Race and the weather is set to be good.


The chairperson of Te Wananga o Aotearoa says the wananga wants to continue offering the Kiwi Ora programme for new migrants, if it can get Tertiary Education Commission to fund it.

Craig Coxhead says Kiwi Ora currently has more than 4000 students, accounting for about 10 percent of the wananga's funding.

While enrolments are done through the wananga, course content and tuition is provided by a private company.

Students can enrol at any time during the year, but Kiwi Ora head Susan Cullen says her company won't take new enrolments after the end of this year, because funding for students taken on after that date won't continue into 2008.

Mr Coxhead says he'd like to see the programme continue, if it can be included back in the wanaga's profile or funding plan with the Tertiary Education Commission.

“We're currently in discussions about our current profile and we’re looking at Kiwi Ora as part of our profile beyond 2008,” Coxhead said.

Tertiary Education Commission spokesperson Andrew Bristol says the decision to stop funding Kiwi Ora was made last year, because the TEC felt it was too popular and out of step with migrant need.


Maori potential will be on the table at the Labour Party's annual conference in Rotorua over the weekend.

Maori Affairs Minister Parekura Horomia says Maori have benefitted over the past four years from government initiatives aimed at improving opportunities in the workplace.

He says the party needs to maintain that momentum.

“One thing we’re very clear on is the right skills for the appropriate opportunities for those things that are round, and when you have a shortage of nursing of about 1000, you have a teacher shortage, in the trades, that has a big M on it which is about us as Maori people,” Horomia said.


Tonight's Tainui sports awards will highlight the success of sports people from the Waikato-based tribe in extreme sports.

The more usual codes will be in the competition, with entrants in netball, basketball, softball and rugby, including a nomination for Farah Palmer for captaining the New Zealand team to win the women's rugby world cup.

Coordinator Julian Williams says there are also nominations on slalom skiing, karate, kickboxing, boxing and motorsport.

The awards will be held at the Waikato-Tainui endowed college at Hpuhopu.


A large group from Tainui is expected in the far north tomorrow to support the visit of King Tuheitia to Te Koa.

Tainui spokesperson Tom Moana says by going back to the area his grandmother came from, King Tuheitia is responding to an invitation made when he was crowned.

Mr Moana says the welcome from Te Aupouri at Potahi Marae in Te Kao will be slightly different from the usual round of Kingitanga poukai.

“They may not be directly involved with Kingitanga, but it’s also about family, more so than the Kingitanga situation, Moana said.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Maori Party looks to tighten policy process

It's party conference season again, with Labour gathering this weekend in Rotorua and the Maori Party holding its annual conference in Christchurch.

Co-leader Tariana Turia says the Maori Party is not expecting a big turnout in Otautahi, but after holding five bi-monthly hui in the North Island, it was time to support the Te Tai Tonga electorate.

Mrs Turia says the conference will tackle organisational and fundraising issues, as well as criticism that it makes too much policy on the hoof.

“For instance on smoking, where Hone (Harawira) had made an announcement that we were going to put in place legislation to get smoking out of Aotearoa. You can’t go out and make a public statement and not realise that is going to be taken as the policy of your party,” Turia said.

Tariana Turia says historian Rawiri Taonui, and former Alliance MP Willie Jackson, have been asked to critique to the party's performance during its first year in Parliament.


The head of the Drug Foundation says the way to tackle New Zealand's drug and alcohol problems is at the community level.

Ross Bell says this week's hui at Orakei Marae of CAYAD, or Community Action on Youth Alcohol and Drugs, highlighted the range of initiatives being tried around the country.

Mr Bell says of particular interest was the development of models to combat problems in the Maori community.

“If Maori kids are caught with drugs and alcohol in school, do we kick them out or do we actually put some support around them. And what would that support look like, is it going to be a Pakeha model or is it going to be a Maori model. The broader drug and alcohol sector where I am from are asking these questions,” Bell said.

Ross Bell says there are now more than 40 CAYAD branches, many of them involving Maori service providers.


There is a rare opportunity tonight to see one of the most significant events in modern Maori history on the big screen.

The New Zealand Film Archive in Wellington is showing Te Matakite o Aotearoa, a film of the 1975 Maori Land March.

Himiona Grace, the archive's kaitiaki taonga whitiahua, says director Geoff Steven and cameraman Leon Narby took a fly on the wall approach.

“The cameraman and the director were just in there with the people, walking along the side of the road. They also got them at various marae as they stopped for each night. He caught a lot of the talk that was just casual, funny, and also quite political, so he managed to capture a lot of korero that people wouldn’t know existed. Most people back in those days did not understand what the land march was about,” Grace said.


The man who penned one of the most popular songs on iwi radio will be laid to rest in his home town today.

Richard Rua Mason, from Pio Pio in the King Country, wrote Sweet Music in Te Hapua in 1985 for his band Electric Puha, and released it on cassette.

Sweet Music in Te Hapua has become something of an anthem in Maori communities. It makes reference to a number of places in the King Country and the Far North, where band members came from, and celebrates the simplicity of life by the sea.

Fellow musician Hayward Norman says Mason was still performing, and had been back in the studio shortly before he died.

Mr Norman said Mason’s music had cross cultural appeal and inspired many Maori songwriters who have gone on to write about the simpler things in life.

He says Richard Mason left a legacy to be enjoyed by future generations of Mori music lovers.


A concert in Gisborne tomorrow night will mix music with an anti-drink driving message.

It's the third Survivor Idol show run by Turanga Health's Turanganui a Kiwa Injury Prevention project.

Performers have to compose songs with a road safety theme.

Organiser Molly Pardoe says it has proved a huge draw.

“We had the first year, and we had to close the doors in 20 minutes, it was a sell out. It was just fabulous. These young people, doing hip hop, kappa haka, rap, it was amazing what they were producing. So this is our third year,” Pardoe said.

Molly Pardoe says Survivor Idol entrants will be judged by last year's New Zealand Idol winner, Rosita Vai.


A big screen showing of the 1975 land march documentary Te Matekite o Aotearoa is stirring up memories.

Director Geoff Stevens and cameraman Leon Narby tracked the march from the Far North to Parliament steps, and their film gets a rare screening at the Film Archive Theatre in Wellington tonight.

Archive kaitiaki taonga Himiona Grace, who grew up in Plimmerton, can a still remember going on the march.

“We walked from Takapuwahia in Porirua to Wellington and I was only about 10, and I thought it was awesome, it was so awesome to be part of. Of course I didn’t understand the politics then. We weren’t allowed days off school back then, we had to be dead to get a day off school, and my parents told us we were going to have a day off school and march with the marchers from our cousins’ marae our in Porirua into Parliament, so it was awesome,” Grace said.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Ngati Kuri corruptin convictions leave tribe split

The High Court sacking of four members of the Ngati Kuri Trust Board may not resolve divisions in the country's northernmost tribe.

Justice Colin Nicholson asked the Maori Trustee to run the board's affairs until new elections, and he barred the four, including chairperson Tom Bowling Murray, from standing again.

Judge Nicholson said the four conspired to block board scrutiny of a corrupt housing scheme at Te Hapua.

Hayward Norman, a former member of the Ngati Kuri board, says many iwi members had a lot of faith in Mr Murray, and the decision will come as a surprise.

“It looked like they were going to resolve matters between them, and at that point it looked like the rest of the board would be held accountable for expenditure, and I am surprised at this turn of events,” Norman said.

Hayward Norman says negotiations for settlement of Ngati Kuri's treaty claims have been held up by the court action, and because some board members had adopted extreme positions on settlement terms.


The executive officer of the New Zealand Drug Foundation says communities have the answers to combat drug and alcohol problems.

Ross Bell has been at the national hui of CAYAD (Community Action on Youth Alcohol and Drugs), which finished at Orakei Marae in Auckland today.

The initiative was set up three years ago to combat the growing problem of drug and alcohol abuse in this country.

There are now over 40 CAYAD sites, many of them working with Maori service providers.

Mr Bell says CAYAD people have a huge amount of experience tackling the problem.

“They're out of the community, they know what the issues are, and they can provide national decision-makers some of the solutions. My challenge to them is to look outside their community and see there are biggest issues like national laws or even things that happen internationally that can impact on the local community,” Bell said.


A national child development monitoring plan can work if managed and resourced properly.

That's the view of Children's Commissioner Cindy Kiro, who is advocating a database on all children, with professional help called on where necessary to assist families.

Dr Kiro says the benefits for Maori are likely to be greater than for the general population because their need is greater, but every child is likely ot benefit.

“The idea is that instead of waiting for problems to happen basically we would proactively assess children at key developmental milestones in their life and put in place the response,” Kiro said.


Taranaki Maori businesses got together today to celebrate their successes, rekindle links with each other and show what they have to offer.

Maunga Tu, Maunga Ora business expo coordinator Wharehoka Wano says a Maori business association was active in the rohe in the 1990s, but in more recent years the businesses have been getting on with their own development.

Mr Wano says it was good to get back together and see how far people have come.

“We've got about 25 Maori businesses that have come to the expo ranging from tourism and education ventures to administration and event management and it’s just an opportunity, because we’re off doing our own things in our own worlds, to get us back under the one roof,” Wano said.

Wharehoka Wano says the expo featured presentations from Kia Kaha Clothing founder Matene Love and government consultant Wayne Mulligan, both Taranaki raised but now making their mark in Wellington and the wider world.


Five years after it was first made, a Tairawhiti initiative is still making an impact in injury prevention nationally.

'Shattered Dreams' is a video about Gisborne man Tamati Paul, whose dream of representing New Zealand in Kayaking in the Sydney Olympics was dashed when he was seriously injured by a drunk driver.

Injury Prevention Turanganui a Kiwa coordinator Molly Pardoe says Mr Paul's story works in any forum.

“It doesn't matter if they are white or brown or anything, it just has such an impact because we did it short, only 17 minutes so we could get the impact message right there. Most of the time Tamati is there, so when we are doing workshops you can see the young people looking and thinking, ‘My god, did that happen to him,” Pardoe said.

Molly Pardoe says the programme is backed by Accident Compensation as a way to highlight the damage caused by drunk drivers.


Maori culture in the deep south is alive and kicking, according to Invercargill teacher Rosina Shandley.

Ms Shandley is organising this weekend's Putangitangi Kapa Haka festival. at which 14 schools from throughout Southland will compete at junior, intermediate and senior level.

The Ngati Porou woman says the festival is a chance to raise awareness of things Maori in a predominantly mainstream environment:

“Because we're such a small community, we’re quite a tight knit Maori community, and quite strong, so we have lots of kaupapa Maori inititiatives going on all the time, but the Putangitangi was a chance for us and for schools to lift their mark a bit because of the competitive edge,” Shandley said.

Fisheries review gives Maori chance for say

Te Ohu Kaimoana Fisheries settlement trust chief executive Peter Douglas says a review of fisheries management is a good opportunity for Maori to have their say.

Fisheries Minister Jim Anderton yesterday released a discussion document on managing species such as snapper, blue cod, kahawai, paua and rock lobster for which there is intense competition between commercial and non-commercial fishers.

Mr Douglas says Maori participate, in commercial, recreational and customary fishing so they need to talk about the impacts of one sector on another.

“What Maori people need is for there to be a decent balance between the commercial, which we’ve got an interest in now, between the customary, which is part of our heritage, and between the recreational, which is part of a lot of people's everyday lives,” Douglas said.

Peter Douglas says the discussion document is the most comprehensive review of fisheries since the introduction of the Quota Management System in the 1980s.


The Maori liaision officer for the Waitakere and Rodney Police District, says the influence of American street gang culture is making the task of parents a lot harder.

Andre Morris says many rangatahi are adopting the dress code and aggressive behaviour they see on films and tv.

Mr Morris says dealing with street gangs takes co-operation between police and communities, but the best solutions are likely to be found in the whanau, and parents can't just give up.

“We've got a new era of kids definitely following what they watch on tv, what they’re mimicking in terms of am street culture, so here we are as police looking at the dynamics of whanau structure. If you kid is walking the streets at 2 am, then where are the parents,” Morris said.

Andre Morris says the death of a 14 year old Avondale boy over the weekend has heightened community concern about the safety of their rangatahi.


A collection of Maori business case studies produced by Massey University could be followed by a text book looking in depth at issues faced by Maori in the commercial sector.

Editor Malcolm Mulholland says the book launched yesterday, He Wairere Pakihi, profiles 17 Maori owned businesses around ranging from Whare Watch Kaikoura, Palmerston North fashion label Ihi Clothing and land Incorporation Ati Hau Wanganui.

Mr Mulholland says the study did not try to compare Maori and Pakeha businesses, but that may come next.

“I think the next step for Te Ao Rangahau, which is the Maori business research centre which produced the book, is to actually develop a textbook which will look at issues such as that and issues such as quadruple bottom line, what role does tikanga play in Maori business and those sorts of issues,” Mulholland said.

Malcolm Mulholland says He Wairere Pakihi aims to provide lessons in business planning, financial forecasting and marketing.


Ngapuhi man David Rankin says he is withdrawing his Matarahurahu hapu from the Treaty of Waitangi.

Mr Rankin says he will be officially advising both the British High Commissioner and the New Zealand Government of the decision.

He says failure by the Crown to recognise the Kaikohe-based hapu's sovereignty will be a clear breach of international law.

“Matarahurahu wanting to move frm the Treaty, we’re wanting tio move away from the Crown. We want to be able to actually be part of constitutional change in this country, because this country will actually start moving towards a republic, and we as Maori want to be the foundation stone for constitutional change in this country,” Rankin said.


A major Gisborne regional initiative aims to significantly increase the profits of East Coast farms.

Tairawhiti Land Development Trust chairperson Kingi Smiler says the Sheep For Profit programme involves eight farms from Wairoa to Tolaga Bay, totaling about 100,000 stock units and 14,000 hectares of land.

Working with meat company Bernard Matthews and veterinary consultants AgriNetworks, the trust is helping Maori farmers better manage soil and stock health and minimise losses of lambs and ewes.

Mr Smiler says start up costs are low, but the increase in productivity goes straight to the bottom line.

“It's adding roughly four and a half kilos of sheepmeat to each of their sheep, and when you include that with an increase in the amount of sheep they are actually producing, they expect a bottom line impact on current prices of about $22,000 annually for each farm,” Smiler said.

Kingi Smiler says the key to Sheep For Profit is making better use of the information farmers collect.


A new publication from the Department of Internal Affairs historical section is already proving a hit with Maori.

Maori Peoples of New Zealand: Nga Iwi o Aotearoa provides histories of all the country's major iwi .

General editor Dr Jock Phillips says much of the material has been available online in the Maori New Zealanders section of the Digital Encyclopedia of New Zealand, and that has helped create a sense of anticipation.

Dr Phillips says he's found it hard to keep a copy for himself.

“On the web it’s available both in te reo Maori and in English, and since we’ve had the book around it’s been hard to keep a copy in my possession, because almost any Maori person in sight has grabbed one and wanted to look at the story of their particular iwi,” Phillips said.

Jock Phillips says the book will be released into book stores over the next week.

Teacher crime risk scare threat

Post Primary teachers Association president Debbie te Whaiti says Maori teachers would be concerned if there was a witch hunt about teachers' past histories.

The Teachers' Council has come under fire for the way it deals with teachers found to have criminal records.

Ms Te Whaiti says Maori teachers will be treated the same as any other teacher found to have a criminal conviction for assault, drugs or sexual abuse.

She's satisfied with the job done by the certification body.

“Given that Maori as a population are more likely to have criminal convictions than the non-Maori population, so that’s when the judgments start being made. The Teachers Council make those judgments, and they make them with more information than you could access unless you were the teacher ourselves,” Te Whaiti said.


Maori will again be targeted by the police, when a new recruitment campaign begins this weekend.

For many years the police have tried to attract more Maori into a career within the force.

Numbers have improved, but more are needed.

Andre Morris, the iwi liason officer for the Waitakere and Rodney Police District says it is widely acknowledged how effective police officers working within their own cultural communities can be.

He says getting more Maori into the blue uniform is part of the strengthening relationships between the police and the communities they serve.

“It's not just about us recruiting Maori as police. It is about us getting on side and working and building those relationships with our community. “Our community is our backbone, our tuara, and I can see positive outcomes for us if we take up that challenge,” Morris said.


A Maori Battalion veteran has celebrated his 100th birthday at Wanganui surrounded by more than 250 friends and whanau.

William Hikitangaarangi Smith and five generations of his family were present to mark the ton.

Mr Smith was born at Whangaehu and worked as a freezing worker, drainlayer, Maori warden and, in later years, a farmer.

In Italy he was one of the Maori Battalion troops dispatched to pick up Benito Mussolini -- only to find the Italian dictator had already been executed by partisans.

Rana Hiroti, one of Mr Smith's many grandchildren says in more recent times his grandfather got a computer at age 85, and has become a keen user.

William Smith and his late wife Tiria had 14 children.


Associate Housing Minister Dover Samuels says Maori should not see state housing as the solution for all their needs.

Mr Samuels is urging iwi to look for ways to house their people, using government programmes where they are available.

But he says state rental housing is not a long term solution for whanau, but the income-related rents should offer people an opportunity to save.

“State houses are there as a hand up while they are saving, and when they are in an economic or financial position to move on, they move on and buy their own homes and make the houses available for more needy families,” Samuels said.

Dover Samuels says Maori should also be wary of trying to buy houses before they have sufficient income to service any loans.


Massey University's Te Au Rangahau Maori Business Research Unit today launched a book of case studies highlighting the success of Maori business.

He Wairere Pakihi profiles 17 firms from around the country including a fashion label, tourism ventures, a television production company and a major land incorporation.

Editor Malcolm Mulholland says Maori businesses blend tikanga with profit-making activities, and many face unique challenges.

“Because you are Maori you are expected not only to deal with the business side of things but also some of the social issues, some of the employment conditions, and that type of thing. I must say though, we never encountered anyone who wasn’t happy about the wage they were being paid, or the conditions they faced. The one issue they sometimes did encounter was the whole gambit of issues people may face because they are Maori,” Mulholland said.

Malcolm Mulholland says the unit defined a Maori business as one that is Maori owned.


A young rower will be in top company at next month's Maori sports awards in Auckland.

Awards organiser, Dick Garrett says Storm Uru, who won the single skulls at the world under 23 rowing championships, is up against rugby league prop Ruben Wiki and All Black prop Carl Hayman in the men's category.

Contenders for the top senior women's award are Farah Palmer from the Black Ferns rugby team, Silver Ferns netballer Temepara George and tennis player Leanne Baker.

Mr Garret says there are a host of new names in the junior awards category, reflecting the diversity of sports that have seen Maori success during the past year.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Fast timetable sought for tribunal inquiry

The lawyer for the Marutuahu Confederation of Hauraki tribes says the Waitangi Tribunal needs to act quickly on an inquiry into aspects of the government's treaty settlement process.

The tribunal's acting chairperson, judge Carrie Wainwright, has asked more than 40 claimant groups to a judicial conference next month to discuss whether their complaints about the process should be merged into one claim.

Paul Majurey says Marutuahu believes Judge Wainwright should not lose sight of the fact the original complaint was about the Crown's Agreement in Principle with Ngati Whatua which gives the Orakei hapu first right to buy surplus Crown land over large parts of Auckland.

“It's brought the settlement policy into huge disrepair. You have a huge area of central Auckland, you have an agreement in principle that recognises one tribe exclusively after three years of secret negotiation, and because it involves the removal of all treaty protections from that huge area for all other tribes, last up first dressed,” Majurey said.

Paul Majurey says an urgent hearing on the claim could be completed by February.


Associate Minister of Housing Dover Samuels says there is a need for more State Housing for Maori, but not as permanent residences.

The Labour list MP yesterday attended a meeting with iwi leaders from the Ikaroa Rawhiti electorate in Hastings to discuss Maori housing initiatives.

Mr Samuels says the income related rent structure of State Housing is to give Maori and hand up, rather than a hand out.

“What I hear right around the country is the need for more state houses, and I think very clearly that’s an avenue in terms of accessing decent homes for our people who are on low to modest incomes to take the opportunity of income related rents, but don't stay there forever,” Samuels said.

Dover Samuels says a case in Panmure, where a family tried to claim a right to a state house occupied by their late parents, shows the dangers of people getting too dependent on state housing.


A Tauranga Maori immersion school has joined forces with a Rudolf Steiner school to offer an alternative sort of alternative education.
Principal Brad Totorewa from Te Kura Kaupapa Maori o Otepou says students from the kura are going across to the Steiner school for English classes, and Steiner students are learning basic Maori from the kura.

Mr Totorewa says both schools have similar philosophies.

“Both philosophies that underpin both schools are through a holistic viewpoint, so it encompasses Papatuanuku, Ranginui and all that type of stuff,” Totorewa said.


Ngai Tahu chairperson Mark Solomon says Maori have no plans to try to start charging for water.

Mr Solomon met with iwi leaders from Whanganui, Tuwharetoa and Tainui last week to discuss a range of issues, including the current government review of water rights.

He says the discussions are still at a preliminary stage, as they wait for the government to release more details of its plans.

But he says the idea of an iwi levy on water wasn't part of the discussion.

“That certainly wasn’t part of any meeting that I’ve been involved in, discussions along those lines. I was pretty shocked on the weekend to have a number of reporters ringing me about Maori taking control of the water. Where these ideas comes from is somewhere I don't deal in,” Solomon said.

Mark Solomon says the tribes are looking for ways to work more closely on economic, social, cultural and environmental issues.


One of the members of an electoral college shoosing new fisheries commissioners says it won't be a forum for inter-iwi squabbling.

Te Kawai Taumata set up under the Maori Fisheries Act has 10 members chosen by regional groups of iwi and one member from the urban Maori authorities.

Tainui representative Tukoroirangi Morgan says the terms of four members of Te Ohu Kaimoana fisheries settlement trust are due to expire next month, and Te Kawai Taumata is trying to develop a robust and fair process to replace them.

“At the end of the day we leave our iwi hats at the door with a determination that we are trying to get some meaningful progress and some significant progress for all Maori,” Morgan said.

Other members of Te Kawai Taumata include Ngai Tahu chairperson Mark Solomon, Ngati Porou's Api Mahuika, Joe Mason from Mataatua, former commissioner Naida Glavish, Graham Morell from Ngapuhi, Na Reihana from Takitimu, Marty Davis representing Taranaki and Whanganui tribes, John Morgan from the top of the South Island and Sharyn Watene for the National Urban Maori Authority.


A book containing the history of virtually every major iwi in Aotearoa will hit book shelves over the next week.

Titled 'Maori Peoples of New Zealand: Nga Iwi o Aotearoa' it is based on the Maori New Zealanders section of the first theme of Te Ara: The digital Encyclopedia of NZ.

General editor Dr Jock Phillips says many influential Maori such as Dr Ranginui Walker, Tamati Reedy, Mason Durie and Te Maire Tau shared stories from their respective Iwi.

“The background to Ngati Porou, if you want to find out about that story, you can find out. If you want to find out about Ngai Tahu, the early history of Ngai Tahu, and the early history of Ngai Tahu, you will find those stories there. It is reall a gathering together of the traditional stories of all the iwi around the country,” Phillips said.

Jock Phillips says the book is a complete history of all the major iwi and features around 400 images.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Te Kawai Taumata puts out net

A special electoral college has held its first meeting to start the process of selecting new members of Te Ohu Kaimoana fisheries settlement trust and directors for its commercial arm Aotearoa Fisheries.

The college, appointed by regional groupings of iwi, includes the chairpersons of Tainui, Ngati Porou and Ngai Tahu, outgoing commissioner Naida Glashish for Tai Tokerau, Graham Morell from Ngapuhi, Joe Mason for Mataatua, Na Reihana from Takitimu, Marty Davis representing Te Tai Hauauru tribes, John Morgan from the top of the South Island and Sharyn Watene for the National Urban Maori Authority.

The Arawa position remains to be filled.

Tainui chairperson Tukoroirangi Morgan says the group is still working out how to fill the four positions which will become vacant next month.

“It's around trying to get a process that is robust, fair, and appropriate, having consideration for the kind of contention and controversy that has shrouded the previous election processes, we want to be cautious in our approach, we want to act in a responsible manner, that is what we intend to do,” Morgan said.


Massey University academic Fiona Te Momo says a high turnover rate of Child, Youth and Family Service social workers puts great stress on Maori staff and communities.

Some 400 staff, 14 per cent of the department, left in the year ending June, 100 higher more than in 2002.

Dr Te Momo says Maori case workers tend to get the tough assignments.

“CYFs has a low number of Maori liaison staff. They have a high paper workload to do as well. A lot of the ones that are employed, not many of them have a lot of them have not a lot of experience working in their communities. Now when you get this coupled with a lot of clients they don’t have enough human resource to get to, you can see it starts to break down,” Te Momo said.

Fiona Te Momo says Maori runanga and other organisations need to take more of the load of social work, and not wait for government to step in.


The High Court rejection of a claim for compensation by Bay of Islands oyster farmers is a blow for Maori in the region.

The oyster farmers sued Far North District Council for $12 million because they claimed the source of viral contamination in 2001 was caused by sewage discharges from nearby Kawakawa.

Environmental activist Emma Gibbs says there are no positives for Maori to come out of the ruling.

“We still have no jobs for those families. They’ve all promised, their employers, the oyster farmers, that as soon as the farms were open they’re all coming back to work. Right up to this day those Maori families are still there because there’s no mahi apart from that. And of course people are still eating kaimoana,” Gibbs said.

Emma Gibbs says the council should have accepted the blame because its sewerage infrastructure was so run down.


Maori community development expert Fiona Te Momo says Maori at every level need to get more involved in administering social services.

Dr Te Momo, who lectures at Massey University's Albany campus, says the high turnover of social workers from Child, Youth and Family Services is a sign the mainstream system isn't coping with the challenges in the community.

She says it's time for Maori to look after their whanau first, and not wait for government agencies to step in.

”By the time it reaches government level it’s too big. Our runangas and our tribal groupings need to tackle this, start sorting out our own social issues and not leave it to government, because if we leave it to them, it may not always be in our best interests,” Te Momo said.


Award winning Maori television production company Front of the Box Productions wants to give a new look to business.

The company has launched a corporate communications arm, PUNCH Presentations.

Punch spokesperson Philippa Rennie says Front of the Box has experience doing commercial work for indigenous clients, and it wants to take its particular skills and Maori way of doing things to a wider base.

“We feel we can take the best parts of our kaupapa into the commercial sector. We don’t feel they’re at odds with each other, about things like manaakitanga and so forth,” Rennie said.

Philippa Rennie says PUNCH will target the corporate sector and government departments for videos, presentations and new media solutions such as websites.


It was big weekend for Maori sport with three major sporting tournaments in the North Island.

The Nga Hau e Wha Maori Squash Tournament held in Wainuiomata saw one New Zealand's top players, Commonwealth Games doubles silver medalist Tamsyn Leevey from Taumarunui took time out from the international circuit to win the Women's Open.

Rhys Williams from Tauranga won the men's open.

At the National Maori Hockey Tournament at Smallbone Park in Rotorua, Tai Tokerau beat Takitimu in the final to win the women's trophy, while Tamaki Makaurau won the battle against the Waikato Men to take home the men's title.

Rotorua also hosted the national Maori rugby league tournament, where the Taranaki rohe selection trounced Tuhoe in the final.

League legend and Taranaki coach Howie Tamati says there was a high standard of play on display, with the teams boosted by many professional players back from Australia to play for their home rohe.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Claim process could come under tribunal eye

The Waitangi Tribunal has called a judicial hearing on whether it should inquire into the Government's treaty settlement process.

The hearing in Wellington on November the 22nd follows a challenge by Kaipara iwi Te Taou to the government's proposed settlement of Ngati Whatua's claims in Auckland city.

Tribunal acting chairperson Carrie Wainwright says the Te Taou claim is just one of many alleging the Crown's settlement policies and practices are creating fresh treaty breaches.

She invited representatives from more than 40 claims around the country to the conference.

Te Taou spokesperson Lou Paul says his iwi just wants the Auckland claims tested in an open forum.

“We thought we put the issues forward a the last conference, and there was overwhelming support for Te Taou to receive that urgent hearing, which would have then allowed all the other competing claims to also place submissions before the tribunal, so this has taken a lot of them by surprise,” Paul said.


Owners of Maori land leased to Carter Holt Harvey have asked the Waitangi Tribunal to look into the Commerce Commission's failure to take their concerns into account when clearing Carter Holt's forest estate for sale.

The Commission says North American fund manager Hancock Natural Resource Group can buy the 250 thousand hectares of forests, including more than 30 thousand hectares on Maori land.

Kokakotaea Forest Corporation director Glen Katu says the commission refused to hear submission on the effect of the deal would on Maori landowners.

“What we are doing is going to the Waitangi Tribunal to say that here is a claim from a number of forestry owners that we believe we have been disadvantaged by the Commerce Commission not giving us the chance to speak on that particular proposal and perhaps listen to why they shouldn’t approve the transaction,” Katu said.

Glen Katu says the landowners are keen to talk with Hancock about how they can buy back their leases for a fair market price.


Newly-appointed Maori Heritage Council member Mike Spedding is investing in the heritage of the Tairawhiti area.

The former director of the Tairawhiti Museum says like many parts of the country, the area has a dual Maori and Pakeha heritage which should be celebrated.

Mr Spedding says education is the key to understanding, and he is doing what he can to build the next generation of people who will have a respect for the past.

“I'm working for the Tairawhiti Polytechnic here in Gisborne, and they’ve asked me to help design and develop a qualification in heritage and museum studies, so we’re hoping to have that running in the first semester of 2007,” Spedding said.

Mike Spedding, the newest member of the Historic Places Trust's Maori Heritage Council.


Maori landowners say billionaire Graeme Hart's sale of Carter Holt Harvey's forests may come unstuck because their rights as indigenous people haven't been respected.

North American fund manager Hancock Natural Resource Group has been cleared by the Commerce Commission to buy the 250 thousand hectare estate.

Glen Katu from the Te Kuiti-based Kokakotaea Forest Corporation says about a fifth of the forests are grown on Maori or Crown lease land, but Maori have been shut out of the sale process.

He says the landowners have been in touch with the Forest Stewardship Council, whose accreditation is needed if the forest owner is to sell its timber for the best price.

“Part of that accreditation process does provide for working with indigenous people such as Maori in a way that furthers their development as well as the forestry company’s development, And obviously that is not something we have seen to date from Carter Holt Harvey,” Katu said.

Glen Katu says Maori landowners just want the chance to buy back their forest leases at a fair market price.


More gambling profits need to be channelled back into helping problem gamblers.

That's the view of Hokianga-based community health worker Hohepa Topia.

Mr Topia says the government is making huge amounts of money from
gambling, but seems unwilling to put the resources into dealing with its
negative effects.

He says the impact can be seen in any Maori community.

“The problem has to be everywhere, because people can see it. All you have to do is go past a TAB, you’ll find our own people going in and gambling. Pokey machines are everywhere. They should tighten up on rules and regulations, and gambling organizations should be made to be more accountable,” Topia said.

Joe Topia says much of the money that is currently directed toward the problem is thrown willy nilly to organisations without clear directives as to how it should be spent.


A Maori cooking show is making big inroads into Food TV.

In Kaiora, chef Anne Thorp puts together traditional cuisine prepared for her Maori musical guests, who reciprocate by playing waiata.

It was originally put together to screen on Maori Television, but was quickly picked up to screen on Sky's food channel.

Dishes like Horopito carpetbag steak, and koura e tamure or crayfish and snapper salad, must have gone down a treat with the channel's producers, because Ms Thorpe's show is now being shown overseas.

“Well since the Kaiora programme went on the food channel, it’s been picked up by TVF International, one of the biggest distribution companies in the world for television programmes, it has headlined their cooking programme at Cannes, it’s up on the big screen,” Thorp said.

Anne Thorp says the distributors plan to fly her to the south of France early next year, to cook for the international producers.