Waatea News Update

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

My Photo
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Friday, July 06, 2007

Modest VC winner thanks supporters

Our newest Victoria Cross winner is thanking New Zealanders for the support they have given him since the award was announced.

35-year-old Willy Apiata, a corporal in the Special Air Services, won the highest medal for bravery for carrying an injured comrade to safety through enemy fire in Afghanistan in 2004.

The softly-spoken warrior met the media at the SAS compound in Papakura today.

He says he was just doing his job, drawing on the training he has received throughout his army career.

Corporal Apiata says he has received a huge number of messages and emails this week.

"The support that I've got from our fellow kiwis, just people here, not just here but offfshore as well. The support has been immense. My aroha goes out to them and I thank them for all their support," he says.

Corporal Apiata says he's taking things one day at a time, but he's looking forward to taking his medal back home to Te Kaha some time soon.

Corporal Apiata's citation


Treaty claims can improve the health of the community.

That was a point made by Kathrine Clark, the head of Auckland regional Maori public health organisation Hapai Te Hauora Tapui, to this week's Public Health Association conference.

She says health planners often neglect to talks to many in the community who can make valuable contributions, including educationalists, business people, and especially those working for iwi and hapu on Treaty of Waitangi claims.

"They are some of the people who are considering not only the economic benefits for their whanau but they are also thinking of the social and environmental and the cultural elements of the claim process. That is exactly what public health is about, so when we are wanting to work with Maori, we should consider who all of those players are," Ms Clark says.

Health agencies also need to develop good relationships with kuia and kaumatua so they can identify community leaders.


Te Puni Kokiri's chief executive says Maori will be an important part of making Auckland a vibrant international city.

Leith Comer was in Tamaki Makaurau for this weekend's Atamira... Maori in the City expo at the ASB Showgrounds.

It's a showcase of Maori in business, arts and music, with exhibits, a business forum and free concerts.

Mr Comer says Maori are assuming an increasingly important role in regional and national development.

He says because Auckland is the largest centre of Maori population, it's important they help plan the city's future.

"If Auckland is going to be a first class city, Maori have to be involved in the economic engine room, developing the sould of the city and the face of the city, and so events like this are a forerunner of making Maori a vital part of the way Auckland emerges," Mr Comer says.

Atamira runs until Sunday.


Health researcher Papaarangi Reid has been named this year's Public Health Champion.

The Public Health Association says the Maori dean of Auckland University's medical and health sciences faculty has used exceptional research skills and advocacy to highlight disparities between the health of Maori and non-Maori.

In doing so the Te Rarawa woman helped make Maori health a national priority.

Dr Reid says everything in public health is done by team or succession of people, so her award needs to be shared.

She says Maori have been on an incredibly journey in health in the 20 years she has worked in the sector.

"We can remember when smoking on marae was commonplace and there were big cigarette containers in the middle of wharenui, and now we have smoke free marae almost every single one, and how far we have come. Sometimes we still go on about some of the statistics, but actually we have been on a huge journey and we need to congratulate ourselves on the big changes we've made," Dr Reid says.


A central North Island Maori trust is helping Maori in small rural communities enter the information age.

Tuaropaki Trust owns businesses ranging from farms to geothermal power stations to a satellite broadband company.

Tony Hill from Tuaropaki Communications says the state of existing networks means many places can't get copper wire-based broadband services.

He says satellite is ideal for such communities as Whangara on the East Coast, where the movie Whalerider was shot.

"They have a satellite dish and also they have wireless off the back of the satellite dish. Simple applications like internet banking. You don't have to travel an hour to your local bank. They can talk to anyone in the country as if they were in a major centre, so they're not disadvantaged at all by living in living in a rural situation," Mr Hill says.


New Zealand's news Victoria Cross winner says he was just doing his job.

Willy Apiata became the first New Zealander since the second world war to win a Victoria Cross when he carried a wounded comrade across open ground to safety during a clash in Afghanistan in 2004.

The Special Air Service corporal says it was what he was trained for.

"Throughout my entire career in the army, in the defence force, we're taught the ethos and values of being in a family environment in that sort of family, and they train us for different situations that may occur in our lives and out careers and they best prepare us for them, and I just done my job," Corporal Apiata says.

He has always looked up to past Victoria Cross winners.

Three other SAS members won gallantry medals for action in Afghanistan, but they are not being named in line with the service's tradition.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Aquaculture settlement a hospital pass

The deputy chair of Te Ohu Kaimoana is warning iwi against rushing into aquaculture investment.

Under the commercial aquaculture settlement, Maori are in line to get 20 percent of new and existing aquaculture space.

The Ministry of Maori Development and the National Institute for Water and Atmospheric Research are holding hui around the country to show Maori some of the marine species they may be able to farm.

But Ngahiwi Tomoana says the Maori fisheries settlement trust fears iwi could be getting a hospital pass.

“Commodity prices are in depression worldwide, and with the high New Zealand dollar and with the red tape to get a fish farming licence it’s really a disincentive to invest in aquaculture,” Mr Tomoana says.

Aquaculture is hugely complex, requiring interaction with district and regional councils, commercial and recreational fishing communities, the fisheries ministry and iwi and hapu.


There is hope a reorganisation of the Maori Wardens will preserve the character of the roopu, while making it more effective.

A working party including Te Puni Kokiri, Police and national Maori organisations met this week to discuss how to spend $2.5 million set aside for the wardens in the budget.

Coordinators will be appointed in six regions with strong existing wardens groups ... police will supply training ... and there will be new resources including winter clothing and vehicles.

Police Maori strategy advisor Wally Haumaha says the wardens have a vital role to play in many communities.

“The wardens have a unique relationship and a unique style that enables them to go where others fear to tread. The richness has been their ability to promote the values of Maori but still being able to look for the right sort of options to direct those people in need,” Mr Haumaha says.


A member of a Maori delegation heading to China this month to talk tourism says it is building on the work of two prominent New Zealanders.

Maori Tourism Council chief executive Johnny Edmonds says Hiwi Tauroa established a trust to foster relations between Maori and Chinese.

The former Race Relations Conciliator wanted to build on the work of Rewi Alley, who lived in China from 1927 until his death 20 years ago.

Mr Edmonds says unlike the western model, where business often precedes relationships, Maori and Chinese prefer to build relationships, then talk deals.

“It was people like Hiwi, with his discussions with Rewi Alley who started off the whole idea of that rather special relationship and out of that initiatives can happen, whether they happen to be in tourism, aquaculture, education, doesn't matter,” Mr Edmonds says.

He says as the Chinese economy grows, its people are looking for overseas tourism experiences.


An expert on the New Zealand constitution says Maori appellants are likely to fail if they take a case against Te Arawa's land settlement to the Supreme Court.

The Federation of Maori Authorities and the Maori Council say the Government's plans to give Te Pumautanga o Te Arawa 50,000 hectares of Kaingaroa Forest, pocketing more than $60 million in accumulated rents in the process, breaches the 1989 forestry settlement.

The Court of Appeal says it can't stop Parliament enacting the settlement, and the appellants can't invoke the Treaty of Waitangi because of a 1941 Privy Council ruling the treaty was not part of New Zealand law.

Jock Brookfield, an emeritus professor at Auckland University, says while the new Supreme Court can overrule the Privy Council, it's unlikely to on this issue.

“If we want basic constitutional change so that the treaty becomes an effective basis for the constitution, that would have to wait for basic constitutional reform, most likely when the country becomes a republic perhaps,” Professor Brookfield says.

He says Parliament has shied away from making the Treaty of Waitangi a basic constitutional document, so references in law to the principles of the treaty have a limited effect.


The Minister of Maori Affairs says he's not sure what role the Maori Council can play in a reform of the Maori wardens.

The council, along with other national Maori organisations, police and Te Puni Kokiri, is on a working party looking at how an extra budget allocation for the wardens should be spent.

Parekura Horomia says while the wardens are covered by the same Act as the council, they have tended to act autonomously.

“The Maori Council is nowhere near as active as it used to be. You know one time in the 80s and 90s the Maori Council was very active in doing initial things that have certainly borne fruit now, but the process of being appointed by the marae and then up to the Maori executive and up to the Maori Council has certainly dated in a lot of regions,” Mr Horomia says.

Iwi runanga have taken up some of the work previously done by the Maori Council.


One of the organisers of today's Maori expo in Auckland hopes the event may one day become as popular as Pacifica.

Kim Hegan says the three-day Atamira - Maori in the city will showcase Maori talent in business, arts and music.

It's a joint venture by Te Puni Kokiri and Ngati Whatua o Orakei.

Thousands of people are expected.

“It's really the first time. I think the only thing like this is Pasifika, which has become New Zealand’s – it might have become the biggest event in the southern hemisphere now. And there’s never really been a Maori one, and it’s just so obvious really when you think about it,” Mr Hegan says.

On the programme today is a Maori business conference, with the weekend given over to trade displays, art exhibitions and free concerts.

Pakeha input stifles Maori committee

Whangarei's only Maori district councilor says a Maori liaison subcommittee has been a disappointment.

The committee, which was set up in 2005 to provide a Maori voice in the region's affairs, includes six councilors and five appointed iwi representatives.

Kahu Sutherland says while the sub-committee made some progress, it was not as much as hoped.

He says its structure means everything gets filtered through mainstream Pakeha perspectives.

“We've been stifled by staff perspectives. We’ve been stifled by the method which council has to be accountable, and while that process works for a lot of issues, it certainly doesn’t for some things which are of real value to Maoridom,” Mr Sutherland says.

The size and structure of the committee could change after October's local government elections.


Maori tourism operators are off to China to sell their offerings.

John Barrett from the Maori Tourism Council says the 10-day tour will take in Beijing, Shanghai and Chongqing.

He says China is the fastest growing tourism market in the world.

“The China tourism market within the space of five years will be the biggest tourism market on the planet. There will be more Chinese traveling than anyone else on the planet. It’s our fastest growing market in New Zealand, and we want to make the market in China aware of what's available,” Mr Barrett says.


Iwi-based business are going to reveal the secrets of their success.

Ngati Whatua o Orakei and Tainui Group Holdings will feature tomorrow at an enterprise forum as part of the three day Atamira - Maori in the City event at Auckland's ASB Showgrounds.

Tiwana Tibble from Ngati Whatua Corporate says the question people are asking is what makes the business go.

“Ngati Whatua Corporate, we’ve got a substantial property portfolio, we’ve got about $200 million equity, got some ideas, going to show a few pictures of what we’ve done over the past 10 years on half a dozen different projects which I think will illustrate in themselves some of the achievements that we have had,” Mr Tibble says.

Other presenters at the sold out event include singer Che Fu, fashion designer Charmaine Love and Defence Force head Jerry Mataparae.


Fewer Maori words are being glossed as speakers of New Zealand English become more comfortable with using them.

Glossing means adding a translation after a word is printed.

Linguist John Macalister says as more New Zealanders become familiar with the meanings of common Maori words, an explanation becomes less necessary.

“A good example is a word like iwi, which probably when it first started to be used a lot in the mainstream would always have been glossed, but now it’s just used and no one blinks. We’ve all become so accustomed to these words, but that glossing is part of the process of becoming accepted,” Dr Macalister says.


The head of Hawkes Bay's Ngati Kahungunu iwi says property speculators are making it impossible for Maori to buy houses.

The iwi has plans to build 150 houses round a marae in the Hastings suburb of Flaxmere in collaboration with the Hastings District Council, but is encountering resistance from some councilors.

Ngahiwi Tomoana says there's an accommodation crisis in the region with few properties Maori can afford to buy.

“Speculators have moved in and snapped up all the low cost houses and are now using the accommodation subsidy to the max. A $70,000 or $80,000 house in Flaxmere which is a two, three-bedroom, 800 square foot house is $250, $300 a week. There’s no hope of the people out there being bale to afford to buy that,” Mr Tomoana says.

He says the Government should change the way the Accommodation Supplement works, so tenants can capitalise it for a home deposit.


The Maori strategy manager for the police says there are no plans for a takeover of the Maori wardens.

That was a fears expressed by some wardens before yeterday's first working group meeting to discuss how to spend the two and a half million dollars earmarked for the wardens in this year's budget.

Wally Haumaha says vehicles, communication equipment and uniforms have been ordered for six regions, including Whangarei, Tamaki, Waikato, Rotorua and Gisborne.

He says police will help training programmes for the wardens, but they're not looking for control.

“It would be presumptuous of police to suddenly come out there and tell the Maori wardens how to train when they’ve been operating according to their own direction over some time. Look, let’s pick the best of what you’ve already got, coupled with what we focus on at our police training centre or out on our maraes and out in the region. We can put together a package that looks after the safety and well being of the wardens,” Mr Haumaha says.

The working group also involves Te Puni Kokiri, the Maori Council, Women's Welfare League and Kohanga Reo.


Bad memories of school dental clinics are still keeping Maori away from dentists, even if it's free.

Margaret Rolleston from Rotorua public health organisation Tipu Ora says a new service which uses senior dentistry students from the University of Otago had a stuttering start.

Tipu Ora signed a memorandum with the university this week to put the scheme on a formal basis, so Maori on low incomes in the region can get free dental care.

Ms Rolleston says there are many obstacles to overcome.

“Not only cost but people still think of the dentist as the murder house type thing, so even now this week on Monday we had 10 no shows for our service, and we think a lot of that is because people are still fearing what’s going to happen when they do sit in that chair,” Ms Rolleston says.

Council baulking at housing plan

Hawkes Bay Maori organisations want the Hastings District Council to act on a plan to build up to 150 houses around a Flaxmere marae.

Tom Mulligan from the Heretaunga Taiwhenua says between his organisation, the Ngati Kahungunu Runanga and the council there is enough land in the area for the project.

He says developers have been lined up, but the council is now baulking after years of planning and working together.

Mr Mulligan says the area is under pressure because speculators have snapped up former state houses and are renting them out for Auckland prices.

“There's a tremendous need for low cost housing, and that’s what this project is. It’s providing low cost housing for needy families, remembering the Flaxmere area is a low decile area, the need for housing is extreme,” Mr Mulligan says.

The development should be self-funded, as the houses are rented out or sold on to first home owners.


Rangatahi need to be more involved in the designed on public health media campaigns.

That's the view of Anton Blank, one of the organisers of this week's Public Health Association conference in Auckland.

This morning a group of rangatahi will identify health priorities for young people.

Mr Blank says that fits with the conference theme of Te Torino - re-imaging health.

He says it's important young people are involved in decisions that affect them.

“When you're working with teenagers, any research will tell you you need to involve them in the design and implementation of any programme, so as soon as we start talking at teenagers, they’re going to stop listening. And if you look at quit smoking programmes around the world, whenever they’ve tried to design something for teenagers, it's never worked,” Mr Blank says.

Today's programme also includes a discussion on the impact of urban sprawl on Maori communities, and the need for Maori involvement in town planning.


Maori words are continuing to creep into the New Zealand vernacular.

Victoria University linguistics expert John Macalister says the new Classic Kiwi stamps reflect the trend of more Maori words being used in everyday New Zealand English.

The stamps include popular sayings like sweet as, tiki tour and hissy fit.

A heat sensitive strip reveals the meaning behind the saying when it is rubbed.

“You know the most distinctive feature of the way we speak is the way English speakers borrow from te reo Maori. An example like tiki tour is interesting because it started as a coach tour, a commercial operation run by the old Government Tourist Bureau, and then that sort of moved into general usage, and it’s quite distinctive and very New Zealand,” Dr Macalister says.

He says North Islanders may be ahead in using Maori words.


There's changes at the top of Te Ohu Kaimoana.

Long-serving trustee Archie Taiaroa has been voted into the chair of the Maori fisheries settlement trust, replacing Shane Jones, who signaled his departure after he was elected a Labour list MP.

The deputy is a new trustee, Ngati Kahungunu leader Ngahiwi Tomoana.

Mr Tomoana says his rapid elevation comes as a surprise, but he feels up to the job.

“The issues are no stranger to me, because we’ve been pursuing these for the last 15, 16 years, but the position is, and I'm just keen to work alongside the experience of Shane (Jones) and Koro (Wetere) and Archie and Rangimarie (Parata) and work alongside Rikirangi (Gage) and others to focus the benefits back to iwi,” Mr Tomoana says.

On the commercial side of the settlement, lawyer Matanuku Mahuika from Ngati Porou has been appointed to the board of Aotearoa Fisheries as the replacement for Robert McLeod.


A conference on whanau violence has heard that long term strategies are needed to tackle the problem.

Suzanne Pene from the South Auckland Violence Prevention Network says domestic violence is an intergenerational problem, which requires intergenerational solutions.

Counties Manukau police say one reason the number of homicides in the region has dropped over the past year is because more people are acting on what they believe to be domestic disputes.

Ms Pene says that differs from her parents' generation, where domestic violence was rarely discussed.

“It was really hard to talk about it, and I guess the generation that I’m in now, we’re starting to expose the truth within our homes, so maybe the next generation will pick up the kaupapa and really take it on board. The mahi that we need to do this generation is provide support and alternatives to those whanau who don’t know anything else but violence,” Ms Pene says.

Outside agencies need to work with whanau, so they are forced to tackle their own problems rather than leave them strangers to sort them out.


Maori concerns have been prominent at the Public Health Association conference in Auckland.

It's the largest annual gathering of health workers, and this year's theme is Te Torino, or Re-imaging health.

Yesterday's speakers included Auckland University's Manuka Henare on the politics of water, and members of Te Hitu Manawa Maori on the politics of food from a Maori perspective.

Organising committee member Anton Blank says today the conference will hear from rangatahi about the health priorities of young Maori.

“Depending on which statistician you talk to, some will say half our population is under 22.5, so that means our population is browning up, the Maori health population’s going tot be bigger, so as Maori health workers and decision makers we need to be looking ahead and thinking about what them means for planning for health needs,” Mr Blank says.

The conference will also discuss the impact of urban sprawl and town planning on Maori communities.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Vigil looks at violence issues

Maori must take ownership of the violence that plagues their communities.

That was the message from Pita Sharples to the 200 people who gathered for a dawn vigil on Mangere Mountain in South Auckland.

Today's event was organised by south Auckland police to highlight the impact of family violence.

While homicides have been down in the region over the past year after 14 killings the previous year, Dr Sharples says the statistics for other violent incidents show the risk is never far away.

He says too many families fail to intervene when there's a problem in their whanau.

“And the Maori people have a proud good heritage, and our part in the domestic violence is a blot on us, and it’s our fault we are not getting to the families, because they are our families. There is not one violent man out there who is not know to be violent by someone else,” Dr Sharples says.

The vigil included a minute's silence for Claire Hills, whose murder on the mountain in 1998 is still unsolved.


Maori health researchers want to talk with Pakeha about their experiences with the health system.

Massey University's Whariki research centre has been given $850,000 by the Health Research Council for a three-year study on privilege and structural advantage in health delivery.

Project head Belinda Borrell says the research will look at everyday things that people take for granted, until they don't have them.

She says it is well-established that Maori and non-Maori have different access to health services.

“There are forces in our society apart from socioeconomics, apart from money, that have an effect on health outcomes. We know that a lot of Maori and Pacific disadvantage is unerarned by that population, so that must then follow that a lot of privilege and advantage is also unearned,” Ms Borrell says.

The researchers will talk to people who identify themselves as mainstream New Zealanders, as well as look at health policy development and media treatment of Maori health issues.


A South Island site linked to a bloody piece of New Zealand history is to become protected reserve.

Takapuneke, near Akaroa, was the home of Ngai Tahu's paramount chief Te Maiharanui, who was slain in 1830 after being lured on board a British ship chartered by Ngati Toa warlord Te Rauparaha.

As a result the British Crown sent James Busby to New Zealand in 1833 as British Resident to curb the lawlessness, a move which led to the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi seven years later.

The old Banks Peninsula District Council leased the land to a farmer, but its new owner, the Christchurch City Council, has other ideas.

George Tikao from Onuku Runanga says Akaroa Maori are supporting the change in status.

“The land at Takapuneke is not for sale. The process they are working on will in time bring about closure on this property significant to all the people of Banks Peninsula related to the chief that was murdered,” Mr Tikao says.

He says last week's World Heritage Council meeting, which included a session at Onuku Marae, raised awareness of the region's heritage sites.


Tauranga Moana rangatahi may be walking through the doors of a new total immersion Maori secondary school.

The Ministry of Education is consulting with Ngai Te Rangi, Ngati Ranginui and Ngati Pukenga over whether to create a single large school, or have several smaller marae-based units.

Hauata Palmer, the chair of the Ngai Te Rangi Runanga, says that's a way to get around the high price of land in Tauranga.

“At marae you already have most of the resources there and there’s very little in terms of set-up costs. What the marae-based ones are suggesting is it would cost less to set up but the resources will be distributed in a more fragmented way,” Mr Palmer says.

The school will help Tauranga iwi hold on to their dialect.


Organisers of a dawn vigil against family violence in South Auckland are disappointed by this morning's turnout.

About 200 people gathered on Mangere mountain in cold but clear weather to remember those killed over the year.

That's a fifth of the number who turned out last year to whakawaatea or clear the way for the community after a spate of homicides in the region, including the Kahui twins.

Maryanne Rapata from the Counties Manukau Police, says while there have been fewer deaths, there are still unacceptable levels of violence in the community.

“People have commented about the small amount of people, and I would put it at about 200. The sad thing is it’s an indictment of our society that some little baby has to die before people start showing up at these sorts of things,” Ms Rapata says.


Elsewhere in Auckland, a national Maori whanau violence conference heard of an emerging trend of assaults by women.

Suzanne Pene, from the South Auckland Violence Prevention network, says the 60 delegates are looking at the triggers for violence.

She says collaboration between outside agencies and whanau is needed, so the welfare of families is not left in the hands of strangers.

The hui recognises men are not always at the centre of violent incidents in the home.

“The dynamics are changing now. Previously you had predominantly male assault females. Now you are looking at sisters abusing sisters, daughters abusing mothers, it’s changing in terms of the dynamics for violence within whanau,” Ms Pene says

Many of the problems which need to be addressed are inter-generational, so there are no quick fixes.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Maori Council condemns government forest grab

The Maori Council says the Government seems to have no interest in protecting the interests of Maori in treaty settlements.

Spokesperson Jim Nichols says it is likely to appeal this week's decision by the Court of Appeal not to intervene in the proposed central north Island settlement with Te Pumautanga o Te Arawa.

The council and the Federation of Maori Authorities wanted the court to block the transfer to the Crown of 50 thousand hectares in the Kaingaroa Forest and 63 million dollars in accumulated rentals.

Under a 1989 deal with the council and the Federation of Maori Authorities, all Crown forest land was to be held by the Crown Forestry Rental Trust until the Waitangi Tribunal identifies the rightful owner.

Mr Nichols says under the guise of speeding up the claim process, the Government has by-passed that agreement for its own benefit.

“In moving into direct negotiations, it would appear a new set of rules has been put on the table which allows the Crown to abdicate its responsibility from any legislation that may have been put in place to protect Maori,” Mr Nichols says.

The treaty settlement process is still relatively new, so there is no need for the Government to rush through it.


Rotorua Maori should soon have better teeth.

Otago University's Dentistry School will today sign a deal with Tipu Ora Charitable Trust to provide services to the community.

The trust will provide facilities and patients for final year students to work on, under supervision.

Tipu Ora manager Raewyn Bourne says Otago students have been coming north for work experience in their holiday breaks for several years, and the new agreement will formalise and extend the process.

She says the community appreciates the service.

“We now have people coming back in either their second or third year just to have a check up as opposed to having a mouth full of teeth needing attention. People who otherwise would never have considered it an option to have their oral health attended to can have that opportunity,” Ms Bourne says.


Massey University researchers are to stop looking at disadvantage and look at the structural advantages enjoyed by some parts of society.

The Whariki Group has received $850,000 from the Health Research Council for a three year study on the health implications of conferred privilege.

Research leader Belinda Borell says such advantages are usually invisible to those who enjoy them.

She says it has major implications for Maori, who come up against invisible barriers.

“When Maori as a population are continually being defined in the mainstream society as being a burden on society and drawing people down, that creates a culture where Mari are not as forthcoming to seeking what they are actually entitled to, because they don’t want to reiterate that stereotype,” Ms Borell says.

She hopes the research will generate a more informed discussion around questions of advantage disadvantage in society.


Two more iwi have been cleared to receive their fisheries assets.

Ngati Kahu in the far north is to receive an initial settlement of just over
$4 million in deepwater quota, cash and shares in Aotearoa Fisheries.

Rangitane, from Manawatu and lower Hawkes Bay, is to get just under $2 million in assets.

Te Ohu Kaimoana chief executive Peter Douglas says Ngati Kahu will get another $1.5 million of inshore quota once it agrees on boundaries with neigbouring iwi.

Rangitane is in line for about $4 million of inshore quota.

He says the mandating process is rigorous.

“All of the mandated iwi organisations that qualify must have constitutions and deeds that satisfy our requirements of the act. They need to be transparent with their accounts and provide those on an annual basis. They need to have regular elections as well as running a register of members that meets the requirements of the Act,” Mr Douglas says.

So far 43 iwi have now gone through the mandating process, and only 14 remain.


Maori organisations and government agencies meet in Wellington today to start charting a new path for Maori wardens.

The Minister of Maori Affairs has asked the Maori Council, the Maori Women's Welfare League, Wardens, police and other stakeholders to identify areas of greatest need.

This year's budget gave Te Puni Kokiri $2.5 million to spend on wardens, who are a familiar sight at hui and on some city streets late at night.

Parekura Horomia says the volunteer organisation needs support.

“I'm very committed to making sure that the working group, along with the wardens’ leadership, gets to a place where everyone can help and they can still be who they are to get some modern skills and also at the same to support some simple things, like uniforms, a decent van, all of those things,” Mr Horomia says.

Wardens have developed in different ways around the country, but they have provided consistent services to their communities.


The Maori Land Court has extended its hearing on a challenge by MP Dover Samuels against a development on his family land.

The court has been sitting in Whangarei for the past two days.

An administrator appointed by the court wants to subdivide the beachfront at Matauri Bay to clear a multi-million dollar debt racked up by Matauri X Incorporation.

It includes seven acres of land the MP inherited from his parents, which he says should have been partitioned out.

Mr Samuels says the administrator, Kevin Gillespie, failed to consider his interests.

“I would have thought that a legal administrator would have the courtesy to come and talk to me and my family, make some provisions or enter into meaningful consultation as to where we stood in regard to the subdivison of land that was owned by my mum and dad,” Mr Samuels says.

The court will reconvene on Friday to hear the final witnesses.

Drinks on the house from Dover

Dover Samuels is angry at having to pay all the lawyers in a family land dispute.

The Maori Land Court in Whangarei is hearing a challenge by the Labour list MP to a subdivision at Matauri Bay.

An administrator appointed by the court is developing the leasehold sections to pay off a $6 million debt run up by the previous managers of the Matauri X Incorporation.

It includes seven acres of freehold land Mr Samuels inherited from his mother, which he says should have been partitioned out earlier.

He says it's not right that administrator Kevin Gillespie is using the incorporation’s resources to fight owners.

“I'm a major shareholder in Matauri X that’s going to be providing the funds to pay the legal counsel and the interim administrator at the other end to object to what I see as a demand for natural justice, and quite frankly I see it as an affront to the Ture Whenua legislation,” Mr Samuels says.

If the case fails he intends to appeal.


Maori need to do more to to ensure their rangatahi so they don't end up in gangs.

Tai Hauauru MP Tariana Turia says the persistence of gangs on the fringes of Maori society is a sign that long running problems aren't being addressed.

She says young people should have better options.

“I am very sad that our kids believe that that’s the only place for them to go and I think that says a lot about the rest of us actually, that our kids feel that this is a group of people that care about them, who will feed them and take care of them, but also maybe involve them in criminal activity,” Mrs Turia says.

Problems with gangs such as her home town of Wanganui is experiencing can't be solved with knee jerk short term thinking.


Health researchers are recommending more support services to address high rates of substance abuse among Maori gay, lesbian and bisexual people.

Frank Pega from Massey University says his study found gays and lesbians are four times as likely to regularly use amphetamines than heterosexual respondents.

He says within those populations, Maori are particularly vulnerable and stigmatised.

“We found a somewhat elevated use among Maori, particularly with regards to tobacco and illicit drugs. There needs to be an inclusion of this particular sub-population into our core policy, and there needs to be some targeted health promotion, particularly towards Maori gay, lesbian and bisexual people,” Mr Pega says.

Existing services should reorient themselves to better serve the most vulnerable groups.


Northland Maori are looking beyond farming oysters and mussels.

Lisa Kanawa, the Ngapuhi Runanga's natural resources manager, says five Taitokerau iwi are developing a region-wide aquaculture strategy.

They'll be hearing from the National Institute of Water & Atmospheric Research and other agencies on Friday about what's needed to farm species like paua, kingfish and eels.

Ms Kanawa says with 20 percent of all new aquaculture space to go to iwi, Maori need to think long term about their role in the sector.

“This will give an opportunity for Maori to understand they can enter into more than just 20 percent of that space. They can have the whole 100 if they want it, and here are some species or some ideas about how that might happen in a way that can raise some economic development in the north, knowing that we are struggling to make really good use of our kaimoana resource,” Ms Kanawa says.


The Prime Minister says many Maori families will join KiwiSaver once they realise their contribution could be trebled.

The scheme, which launched on the weekend, is a way to save for a first home or retirement.

Ms Clark says the average income for a Maori worker is just over $26,000 a year.

If they save the minimum $20 dollars a week, it soon mounts up.

“For your $20 dollar investment, you treble your money going into your savings account every week. You put in $20, the total amount going in from your personal tax credit and your employer is over $60. Now, that’s a no brainer isn’t it and I think when all our people across communities understand that, you’re going to get very good take up,” Ms Clark says.


Maori primary school teachers have been meeting in Auckland to discuss problems in the sector.

Former kura kaupapa principal Jim Perry says the teachers are concerned at the shortage of Maori speaking teachers throughout the school system.

There is also a too few males teachers, an a disturbing pattern of low achievement by boys.

About 200 teachers attended the four day hui, which ended today.


Counties Manukau police believe attitudes towards family violence have changed in south Auckland over the past year.

The police are helping coordinate tomorrow's dawn vigil on Mangere Mountain.

It's a year after the community gathered on the mountain to mark the 14 deaths to family violence in the city the previous year.

Iwi liaison officer Dick Waihi says this year's event has a more positive message.

“The presentation’s going to be similar to last year. The speeches however hopefully will be about the good things that have happened since then. Reporting of family violence has gone up. Even though the offender may not have been arrested, at least people are coming in to report it now,” Mr Waihi says.

The Mangere vigil starts at 5 am.

Manukau restores iwi mana over Pukaki

Whanau from a marae next to Auckland Airport are celebrating Manukau City's purchase of their former lagoon.

The lagoon in the Pukaki crater was drained almost a century ago, and has been used as a speedway track, a market garden and a farm.

The council has paid $6 million for properties around the crater rim and the perpetual lease of the crater floor.

Mayor Barry Curtis will visit Pukaki Marae this morning to discuss a shared management plan for the site.

The marae secretary, Maahia Wirihana-Takaanini, says the mana whenua are grateful at the efforts the council has made to implement the recommendations of the Waitangi Tribunal's Manukua Report, which investigated the Pukaki saga.

“We want to acknowledge the commitment of the council to the findings of the Waitangi Tribunal claim and we’re looking forward to how we can support each other in looking after this wahu tapu for the enjoyment of all,” Mrs Wirihana-Takaanini says

Pukaki Crater is one of Nga Tapuwae o Maraaoho, the footprints of the volcano god.


A veteran Women's Refuge worker says a government-sponsored family violence intervention programme won't work for Maori.

Work and Income case managers have been instructed to call in Child, Youth and Family and other government agencies when they suspect violence is happening in a family.

But Mereana Pitman, Refuge's national project manager, says the policy was launched without consultation with the Women's Refuge movement.

She says half Refuge's clients are Maori, and many are reliant on government agencies like WINZ.

“When that becomes known that that is what WINZ will do to you when you go there, then our people are not going to go there. They’ll go underground, and that means they’re not accruing what is due to them, because they’re afraid that their children will be taken,” Ms Pitman says.


The Minister of Maori Affairs says all New Zealanders should be proud of the efforts of Victoria Cross winner Willy Apiata.

The SAS member won the military's top award for bravery for rescuing an injured comrade while under fire from Taleban troops in Afghanistan in 2004.

Parekura Horomia says Maori have always had a strong presence in the New Zealand defence forces, and Corporal Apiata's deeds will now be part of New Zealand's military folklore.

“What it does is expose is the effort that Maori soldiers have always put in but I think in a sense the actual action that happened is more than outstanding, it’s real high level bravery, and that we’ve warded him this tohu is a great thing,” Mr Horomia says.


The Federation of Maori Authorities says a new Court of Appeal judgment throws into doubt any agreements Maori make with the Crown.

The Court yesterday refused to block the transfer of 50 thousand hectares of Kaingaroa Forest to the government for use in a Te Arawa land claim settlement.

Federation spokesperson Paul Morgan says the plan is in breach of the 1989 deal which led to the Crown Forest Assets Act.

The court says it can't make a declaration condemning the government's move because of a 1941 decision that the Treaty of Waitangi can't be enforced in the courts.

Mr Morgan says the Crown isn't being held to account.

“We live in the 21st century. An agreement’s been entered into by parties that clearly knew what they were entering into. Those matters should be honoured. We don’t bneed to look 100 years back into what’s transpired in the past. Common sense should apply and people should act in good faith,” Mr Morgan says.


One of the best explosion craters on the Auckland Isthmus is to become a public reserve.

The Manukau City Council has bought land and leases in the Pukaki Crater near Auckland Airport for $6 million.

Maahia Wirihana-Takaanini, the secretary of Pukaki Marae on the edge of the crater, says the loss of the land and the draining of the lagoon in its centre was a long-standing grievance for tangata whenua.

She says it's a far-sighted action by the council.

“If it becomes a reserve it will be protected. The wahi tapu will be protected for us and enjoyed by generations to come, so we’re delighted with the purchase,” Mrs Wirihana-Takaanini says.

Manukau mayor Sir Barry Curtis and his officials will visit Pukaki Marae this morning to discuss shared management of the crater reserve.


Many Maori homes in the Hawkes Bay will benefit from an innovative home insulation programme.

Te Taiwhenua O Heretuanga is taking on staff to insulate homes belonging to low income Maori with health problems.

Manager Alayna Watene says the social services provider saw clear health advantage from the project.

She says many small Maori communities will benefit.

“The are 46,000 homes in the Hawkes Bay that were built prior to 1977 when insulation became mandatory. About 19,500 of those have incomes below $30,000 so we’re offering it free to those with high house needs and on low incomes,” Ms Watene says.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Appeal Court rejects FOMA challenge

The Court of Appeal has turned down a bid by several Maori groups to stop the Government using part of the Kaingaroa Forest to settle some Te Arawa land claims.

Today's decision means the Federation of Maori Authorities, the Maori Council and Ngati Tuwharetoa must now consider an appeal to the Supreme Court.

The Crown wants to take ownership of a third of the Kaingaroa Forest, pocket more than $50 million in accumulated rentals, and give the land to Te Pumautanga o Te Arawa.

The appellants claim this breaches the agreement they made in 1989, which led to the creation of the Crown Forestry Rental Trust, which holds the land in trust.

They say it’s up to the Waitangi Tribunal to say who is the rightful owner of forestry land.

But the Appeal Court backed the judgment of High Court Justice Gendall that the courts cannot stop Parliament passing laws.

It says the settlement may not be in line with the 1989 agreement, but it would be legal if the politicians say so.


Despite years of research, the Health Ministry still doesn't understand why Maori smoke at twice the rate of the rest of the population.

Associate Health minister Damian O'Connor says the figures are disgraceful, and it's an ongoing challenge to stop Maori taking up the habit.

He says more resources will be put into school programmes and Maori groups which promote the anti-smoking message.

“That's what we’ll be doing with some of that $40 million additional funding, helping some of those groups out there, Maori groups as well, who’re working one on one with people who want to give up, so we’ve been working on this for 20 years, and we have reduced the rate, but the Australians have got it down to less than 20 percent. Ours is still at 23 percent. Why is that? We’ve got to keep asking the question,” Mr O'Connor says.

Most smokers pick up the habit in their early teens.


The head of the Hawkes Bay social service provider which took away the top prize at the Maori Business Awards says the job is harder than it looks.

Alayna Watene says over two decades Te Taiwhenua o Herataunga has built up an asset base of almost five million dollars without government grants or treaty settlements.

It now employs 100 fulltime staff, delivering a wide range of services from early childhood centres, medical and dental clinics and social services.

Ms Watene says it's great getting acknowledgment from the judging panel.

“Those that have an appreciation of what management have to do to achieve what they have. I think a lot of our whanau just take it for granted what happens, that someone just waves a wand and it’s there, but it’s far from the case,” Ms Watene says.

Te Taiwhenua o Herataunga has always stressed financial transparency and sound business practices.


The Federation of Maori Authorities says the Court of Appeal has short changed it in a ruling released today.

The court said it could not stop Parliament passing a law to use part of the Kaingaroa Forests to settle claims with Te Pumautanga o Te Arawa.

FOMA and the Maori Council asked the court for declarations that the proposed deal breached the 1989 settlement which led to the Crown Forestry Assets Act.

The court said upheld earlier decisions that duties under the Treaty of Waitangi cannot be enforced in the courts.

Spokesperson Paul Morgan says the appellants wanted the court to hold the Crown to its promises, and the judgment has serious implications for future deals.

“We're very disappointed at their approach, their conservatism, and how complicated they can make a very simple agreement between parties, which has not been adhered to by the Crown,” Mr Morgan says.

The Federation of Maori Authorities is considering an appeal to the Supreme Court.


The winner of a Maori Women in Business award is attributing her success to the international tourism market being more receptive to cultural experiences.

Melissa Crockett and fellow Ngapuhi wahine Bianca Ranson founded Potiki Adventures three years ago to offer tours based on contemporary Maori experiences and culture

Ms Crockett says their international clients expect more than the stereotypical Maori.

“The poi twirling, tongue poking continues to be fostered by mainstream New Zealand. The kind of travelers we’re dealing with are looking for that connection to culture but they’re looking at what’s the contemporary version of it. Which is why we’ve got a brilliant niche,” Ms Crockett says.

The ranges and beaches of Auckland city provides the perfect landscape for Potiki Adventures to operate in.


The new wave of Maori journalism could come from South Auckland.

25 students today started a one year diploma in Maori media, language and broadcasting at Manukau Institute of Technology.

Wiremu Doherty, the polytech's head of Maori, says the aim is to produce journalists who are competent in Te Reo Maori and English.

“We're targeting our wharekura graduates who have a very good foundation of te reo so we can actually start taking these students and giving them the courage to start playing with our te reo. Te reo Maori can go anywhere,” Mr Doherty says.

Places in the course filled quickly by word of mouth, showing the level of interest among rangatahi in a career in the industry.

Maori business success honoured

Maori radicalism is not dead, going by some of the ideas acknowledged at the Maori Business Awards this weekend.

Auckland’s Langham Hotel was packed with Maori business and political leaders, who were there to celebrate Maori entrepreneurship, innovation and old fashioned mahi.

The awards are the brainchild of the Maori Women’s Development Incorporation, but the men now get a look in too.

The men’s award went to Ahu Developments, which has developed U Parkit, a fully automated car stacking system which is attracting international attention.

Auckland-base Potiki Adventures took the women’s section for showing that Maori tourism is much more than a concert and a hangi.

The top award went to Alayna Watene and her 100-strong team at Te Taiwhenua O Heretaunga, which provides a range of social services to Hawkes Bay iwi.

Maori Affairs Minister Parekura Horomia told the gathering that a sound economic base gives people choices about how they provide for their whanau, linking mana with money.

There was also acknowledgement of the contribution of the head of the women’s development incorporation, Dame Georgina Kirby, who over the past two decades has helped thousands of Maori women get a start in the business world.


Maori secondary school teachers want to find ways the profession can regain some of the public support it once enjoyed.

That's one of the topics being discussed in a professional development hui at Rotorua over the next few days.

Organiser Te Makao Bowkett from the Post Primary Teachers Association says Maori teachers used to be held in high regard and filled prominent roles in Maori communities.

She says that has changed, even though Maori teachers are taking on an even greater workload in the school system.

“A lot of the roles our families, our whanau were once responsible for have actually become part of the broader responsibility of our kaiako Maori. Not to mention science, maths, physical education, information technology,” Ms Bowkett says.

The hui will also discuss staff retention, which is an issue as many Maori teachers are lured away to other careers.


A long-server member of the Historic Places Trust says the trust is now a lot more accepting of the need to protect sites of importance to tangata whenua.

Weaver Te Aue Davis from Ngati Maniapoto has been reappointed to the Trust's board and its Maori heritage council.

Also reappointed were Tuwharetoa paramount chief Tumu te Heuheu and Merata Kawharu from Ngati Whatua.

Ms Davis, who was first appointed to the trust two decades ago, says in her early years her fellow trustees seemed more concerned with buildings than places.

“The attitude we had to overcome very early in the piece was that intangible things were important, such as the old pa sites and burial places and fighting places, things like that. In the early days it was difficult to convince them the spiritual things happened,” Ms Davis says.

A lot of the challenge now is ensuring territorial local authorities have an understanding of the Maori landscape they administer.


The Minister for Maori Affairs says greater involvement in business is creating huge flow on effects for Maori.

Parekura Horomia says there has been an explosion in the number of Maori starting their own businesses over the past five years.

He says events like the Maori Business Awards in Auckland on the weekend send a strong message to those considering taking the plunge.

“It’s what we term mirroring. They’ve seen one member of their whanau start a business then another one, and our kids are going to grow up now understanding that business isn’t an alien thing. Families are starting their own businesses, and some of them are really damn innovative. It’s great stuff,” Mr Horomia says.

Among the businesses honoured were Grace Painters in Manukau, which smartens up tired forklifts, XL Global Business Cafes, the New Zealand franchisee for an international business training network, and Hawkes Bay iwi social service provider Te Taiwhenua O Heretaunga, which won the Tino Taumata award for overall excellence.


Maori prepare a lot of food for large gatherings, and the Food Safety Authority wants to make sure mahuhiri don't go home with sore bellies.

It's launched a campaign called A Shared Vision to promote greater awareness of safety and sustainability when dealing with kai.

Spokesperson Raniera Bassett says New Zealand has a high rate of food borne illnesses.

He says the authority is looking for the most effective way to reach communities.

“We're actually running a survey now with certain marae throughout Aotearoa looking at training resource, that if a marae wants to have some sort of guidelines to clean, cook, cover, chill messages, that’s what we are going to be producing,” Mr Bassett says.

The campaign will also tackle food related diseases such as obesity, heart disease and diabetes, which affect Maori in greater numbers than non-Maori.


New Zealand's high teenage pregnancy rate may be due more to drunkenness than a lack of sex education.

That's the view of Sue Bagshaw, a senior doctor at a Christchurch youth health service.

She says young Maori women are disproportionately represented in teen birth statistics in part because Maori society is more accepting of women having children young.

But alcohol is also a factor, and media campaigns need to take that into account.

“A really major message we should be getting across is - we really have a good message going round that you should not drink and drive. To me it should be, don’t have sex when you’re drunk, because you end up doing something you regret,” Dr Bagshaw says.

The young women are also vulnerable position because parts of their brains that process decisions are not fully developed.