Waatea News Update

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Friday, July 10, 2009

Urban authorities put case on Auckland role

Urban Maori authorities have told a parliamentary committee they won't put up with being second class citizens when it comes to Auckland governance.

Te Whanau o Waipareira and Manukau Urban Maori Authority made a submission to the committee at Hoani Waititi Marae today.

They were questioned about a plan put to the committee yesterday by Tainui for mana whenua iwi to appoint councillors to an Auckland super city council.

Waipareira chief executive John Tamihere says the urban authorities want three seats at large across Auckland voted on by everyone on the Maori electoral roll.

“I acknowledge mana whenua groups but I make the point we are not second class citizens nor are we subservient. We are tangata whenua with treaty rights and entitlements and we want those asserted. Mana whenua also can assert their rights, no problem. These rights should be seen not in competition but in a seamless rights regime,” Mr Tamihere says.

He says the Maori interest can't just be at the top table, but needs to be reflected in every layer of the new council.


A Maori rights lawyer is skeptical the Government will sign up to the declaration on the rights of indigenous peoples.

Maori Party leader Pita Sharples is putting pressure on National to reverse New Zealand's vote on the United Nations' document, and deputy Prime minister Bill English has admitted the debate has shifted to what exceptions this country would want.

Moana Jackson says the government should only sign on if it is willing to abide by its terms ... which past New Zealand governments have been reluctant to do.

“If they do decide to honour all the articles that will ring about I think some profound changes in the status of our people in international law, but in the light of the history of the last 20 years I am skeptical but ever hopeful with regards to the declaration,” Mr Jackson says.

He fears the government's response could be a repeat of the Crown attitude to the Treaty of Waitangi, of signing it but not really honouring it.


Many of the 50 remaining survivors of 28 Maori Battalion have been gathering at Tokanganui a Noho Marae in Te Kuiti to bid farewell to their second lieutenant Kingi Hetet, who died this week at the age of 87.

Mr Hetet, from the Ngati Rora and Ngati Apakura hapu of Maniapoto was the last of the 64 descendants of Hori and Mata Hetet who served in the first or second world wars.

Known as Hoppy because of a childhood leg condition, he was a noted sportsman who represented New Zealand in snooker.

He was also an astute farmer, bringing many Maori land blocks into production.

Mr Hetet's funeral is tomorrow morning.

No reira e te rangatira takoto mai, takoto mai, moe mai.


At times it's been more jab your eye than eye to eye, but a raucous slice of Maori opinion is no more.

Television New Zealand has axed the current affairs talk show fronted by former Alliance MP Willie Jackson after six seasons.

Mr Jackson is proud to have brought his particular style of robust debate to the small screen - and to have challenged the usual style of Maori programming.

“There's this view that there is one particular Maori way of doing things which was everyone had to be quiet, respectful and listen intensely and no one interrupts anyone. I think that’s one way of doing things and that’s good but there’s lots of ways of expressing your Maoriness and I’m really proud of what we were able to achieve on Eye to Eye,” Mr Jackson says.

He says Television New Zealand never realised the potential of the programme, and resisted putting it in a prime time slot.


The first ever national Maori futsal team will be picked this weekend.

Futsal is a trimmed down version of indoor football, with a heavier ball and teams of 5 players.

National squad manager Max Hall says the organiser of the Viking Futsal Pan Pacific championships in Christchurch next month left a spot open for a Maori team.

Trials for the Maori squad will run as part of the northern North island regional finals at the Otara Recreation Centre on Sunday.


They're older, they're slower, and their voices may have lost some volume, but the nation's kapa haka veterans will this weekend prove they've still got what it takes to wow a crowd.

Full houses are expected for the two-day Kaumatua Kapa Haka Festival at the national museum in Wellington, Te Papa.

Vera Morgan is from Te Roopu Tahiwi O te Whanganui A Tara, whose average age is over 80.

She never tires of gatherings celebrating the Maori performing arts.

“I truly enjoy it at 93. I don’t perform well because I had a stroke which left me with disabilities but I’ve been able to overcome that by enjoying the company, enjoying what I do,” Mrs Morgan says.

Her roopu will this year showcase the compositions of Kingi Tahiwi, with other roopu paying tributes to golden age composers like Apirana Ngata, Paraire Tomoana and Tuini Ngawai.

Poke in the eye for Jackson show

Television New Zealand has axed its ground-breaking talk show Eye to Eye.

The show, which provided a post-Parliamentary soapbox for former Alliance MP Willie Jackson, was a rare incursion by maintream television into te ao Maori.

Mr Jackson says he's disappointed its six year run was ended by an email to the producers, rather than the network sitting down and talking about future options.

“We got the shove because basically they didn’t want to come up with any strategy in terms of getting us into prime time. They never saw us as a prime time show even though so many people over the years thought it would be worth a shot at prime time. It doesn’t have to be me but we deserve a chance in the prime time hours. We shouldn’t be ghettoized forever on a Sunday morning,” Mr Jackson says.

He tried to offer a different view of Maori than Television New Zealand was giving in its own programmes.


Maori party co-leader Tariana Turia is confident of winning Government support for the declaration on the rights of indigenous peoples.

Deputy prime minister Bill English has revealed the government is debating what caveats it might want to insert in any endorsement of the document.

Mrs Turia says the declaration, which the previously Labour government voted against when it came before the United Nations General Assemby two years ago, doesn't tell countries what to do.

Instead it sets out aspirations for dealing with indigenous populations.

“It does give some protections to indigenous people and I would hope things kike the foreshore and seabed, the Auckland city issue, that those things wouldn’t happen without people being fully consulted on them before it takes place,” Mrs Turia says.

Australia and Canada have also reconsidered their votes against the declaration.


The chair of a special parliamentary committee wants to see more hearings on marae.

The Maori subcommittee of the Auckland governance select committee is at Hoani Waititi Marae in Waitakere City today, after sittings at Orakei and Te Puea Marae.

National MP Tau Henare by having a mix of formal submissions and an open forum, the committee has given a wider range of people a chance to express themselves.

“We've got what people would have said anyway in a normal select committee process but what we’ve got is a bit of freedom. It’s more about making people comfortable in the knowledge they can stand and deliver on their own patch. I’ve loved it. I think it’s a great innovation and I think select committees should do more of it,” Mr Henare says.

Maori seem united that they want some sort of Maori representation on the Auckland super-city council, but there is no consensus on what it should be.


The central North Island Treelord settlement has pruned the balance sheet of the body that funds research and negotiation of forestry claims.

In its latest report to its Crown and Maori appointors, the Crown Forest Rental Trust has revealed that in the year to March spending on claimants increased 80 percent to $31 million.

Of that $8 million went to CNI and Urewera claimants, who are sharing $280 million in accumulated forest rentals.

Chief executive Ben Dalton says the 20-year-old trust has waited a long time for an opportunity like the CNI settlement, and its people and systems were up to the challenge.

“The whole purpose of the trust is to spend the interest of those accumulated rentals to assist those Maori to get their claims heard or negotiated. The CNI gave us our biggest opportunity and Dr Cullen and Tumu te Heuheu getting together and showing the leadership that was required, it basically was an opportunity we couldn’t afford not to assist with,” Mr Dalton says.

In future the trust will run at a deficit, but it has the funding set aside to resource the remaining forestry claims.


A representative of an Auckland mana whenua iwi says the government should refer the Auckland super-city bill to the Waitangi Tribunal for guidance.

Eru Thompson has lodged a claim to the tribunal on behalf of Waiohua over the Government's rejection of the recommendation from the Royal Commission on Auckland Governance that there be three Maori seats on an Auckland council, including two for mana whenua.

He says it's within the powers of select committee hearing submissions on the bill to suggest such a referral.

Eru Thompson will present Waiohua's submission to the select committee's Maori subcommittee, which is sitting today at Hoani Waititi Marae in west Auckland.


A Whangarei designer says pirates and forgers are forcing him to constantly come up with new work.

Monty Kirkman runs Maori Boy Glass, which makes giftware with Maori patterns embedded beween sheets of glass.

He says the appearance of his designs on coffee cups imported from China shows how easy it is for people with digital cameras to take advantage of what he shows at craft fairs.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Drug reports rankle festival trustees

A trustee for the Parihaka International Peace Festival says it's hard to tackle imbalanced reporting on a national scale.

The Press Council has upheld a complaint against the Taranaki Daily News for a report claiming drugs were freely available at the January festival.

The council found the paper ran the story without seeking comment from festival organisers, who dispute the allegations.

Ruakere Hond says the New Plymouth paper has been forced to let organisers put their side, but there are no such requirements on other newspapers that picked up the story.

“There's no comeback for the papers round the country that ran with the story. Us in Taranaki have very little chance of being able to influence that so we’ve gone back to the Press Council to ask them for direction in relation to seeking remedy over the other newspapers that printed the story and failed to provide balanced statements later,” Mr Hond says.

The festival hopes to develop a better relationship with local media for the future.


Maori proverbs are helping guide a project to restore Hamilton's depleted biodiversity.

Researcher Wiremu Puke says a workshop this week at Waikato University is looking at ecological, Maori and legal issues of replanting an area where less than 2 percent of the original cover remains.

Mr Puke identified the city's pre-European Maori ecosystem from the diaries of Ngati Wairere paramount chief Waharoa Te Puke and discussions with Tainui kaumatua.

He says oral histories are a rich source of information.

“Often moteatea talk about our landscape, our environment, and what they were used for. Patere as well. And when you look at those patere more closely they talk about not only dominant landmarks in one’s hapu and iwi area but depending on how comprehensive a patere is, they talk about landmarks used for gathering kai,” Mr Puke says.

About 200 hectares around the city is currently being replanted, and birds like tui are starting to return.


A group representing Maori musicians says Maori radio may find demands for increased royalties hard to handle.

The Copyright Tribunal is hearing a claim by Phonographic Performances New Zealand, which mainly represents multinational record companies, to triple the amount radio stations pay out of advertising revenue.

Ngahiwi Apanui from Puatatangi says while Maori composers may hope for a bigger slice of the pie, it could affect the viability of the iwi stations who get their work out to the public.

“If you say for example Maori radio stations are making $300,000 a year from a combination of advertising and Te Mangai Paho grants, you may find that’s $9000 and that could be a part of someone’s position, so I can see from a broadcaster’s position how they could have a problem,” Mr Apanui says.


The instigator of a plan to build up to 180 dwellings on a Northland beach feels double-crossed at the way the development has been blocked.

The Rodney District Coucil has refuses a zone change for the five kilometres of Te Arai Beach bought by Te Uri o Hau as part of its treaty settlement.

Independent planning commissioners said the beach between Pakiri and Mangawhai had significant ecological values and was a home to endangered fairy terns and dotterels.

Former Te Uri o Hau chair Sir Graham Latimer, who negotiated the settlement, says the Crown charged the Ngati Whatua hapu a high price for the land because of its development potential.
“They've turned round and changed their mind, and it doesn’t matter that it’s cost us four or five million dollars. It really isn’t a concern of theirs. I’m very disappointed, not so much about the project, but how people can double cross you,” Sir Graham says.


The Press Council has censured a New Plymouth newspaper for its slur against this year's Parihaka Peace Festival.

The watchdog says the taranaki Dauily News was wrong to run a claim drugs were freely available at the January festival, without seeking comment from organisers.

Festival trusteee Ruakere Hond says while the newspaper has been forced to run the organisers' denials, the damaged has been done.

“We feel hurt not so much for the festival but for the name of Parihaka and the difference between the newspaper and the Internet is the newspaper ends up in the rubbish bins. However the Internet whenever you do a search, sign key words, immediately those stories come back up again, so it’s vey difficult for the Parihaka Fesival to respond to it,” Mr Hond says.


Maori teachers want more pay for their support staff, especially those who supply help with te reo Maori.

NZEI Te Riu Roa’s annual Te Kahui Whetu hui of Maori members in Ruatoria resolved to take the issue up with the government.

Laures Park, the union's matua takawaenga, says kaiawhina are important to the day to day running of schools and kura kaupapa, but their value is not reflected in their pay packets.

“We'll be looking at agreements for support staff, who are the lowest paid people. They receive less than the caretakers at the kura, not to say the caretakers don’t do a huge amount of work, but some of our people are kaiawhina and the class wouldn’t work without them,” Mrs Park says.

The hui also looked at the new Maori curriculum and the shortage of te reo teachers.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Iwi wary of too many city bodies

Sir Douglas Graham's plan to resolve Tamaki Makaurau treaty claims has come under fire before a parliamentary committee.

A subcommittee of the select committee on Auckland governance was at Orakei Marae today to hear views on the super-city bill.

Tama Te Rangi from Te Runanga o Ngati Whatua says Maori representation needs to be built into the city's institutions, rather than create separate bodies, as Sir Douglas is suggesting for the management of the Maori interest in harbours, waterways and sites of significance.

“There are some legislated entities already in place that have a clear mandate, a clear commitment and strategy towards serving the interests of all people,” Mr te Rangi says.

Failure to provide a seat at the table for mana whenua in any new Auckland council would be a repeat of past discrimination against Ngati Whatua.


Maori are being urged to get their moles checked in the wake of a new study revealing a sharp jump in the number of Maori with melanomas.

Dr Brian Cox, from the University of Otago's Hugh Adam Cancer Unit, says over the past decade the rate of malignant melanoma among Maori went up 90 percent, compared with a 12 percent increase among Pakeha.

Maori also have a high incidence of thick tumors, which are a major factor in determining the risk of death.

Dr Cox says the study of the data collected by the New Zealand Cancer Registry shows Maori must take the same level of care in the sun as non Maori.

“Maori need to be concerned about skin lesions that are asymmetric, have an irregular border, have a particularly dark colour, particularly black. If they have those sorts of changes in their skin they should probably get them inspected by a doctor,” Dr Cox says.

Despite the increase, Maori are still only a 10th as likely to get a melanoma as a European New Zealander.

The manager of a King Country Maori forestry company says central North Island iwi can benefit from what Ngati Rereahu and Maniapoto have learned about the industry.

Glen Katu says Maraeroa C Incorporation has set up trucking, processing and tourism businesses so it could get more value out of the trees grown on its land adjoining the Pureora Forest.

It is also harvesting and processing harakeke and growing ginseng in its forests.

“From the experimental work we and others are undertaking can only be benefit others coming on stream now and be in a much better position to grow business opportunities,” Mr Katu says.

Maori landowners have the resources to back up entrepreneurial ideas in a way they didn't have even a decade ago.

The author of a report on children killed in driveways says Maori aren't taking the problem seriously enough.

Philip Morreau says three quarters of cases involve Maori or Pacific island children, with one child a fortnight admitted to hospital with severe injuries and up to four dying every year.

He says the rate of accidents in consistent, but the problem doesn't seem to be recognised by the authorities.

“Because this occurs on private property it’s not officially recorded and so the statistics which these papers have been based on are only because myself and those people working with me have identified this as a problem and collected this data and published it. The government, the authorities, Land Transport Safety doesn’t even know the scope of the problem,” Dr Morreau says

A combination of targeted public health messages, safer driveway design and the fencing of domestic rental properties would have a major impact of driveway accident rates.


Maori teachers have been urged to bring a bit of magic to the classroom.

Almost 200 teachers braved bad weather and collapsing roads to attend NZEI Te Riu Roa’s annual Te Kahui Whetu hui in Ruatoria over the weekend.

Laures Park, the primary teacher union's matua takawaenga, says the agenda included new Maori curriculum and the shortage of te reo teachers.

She says while whanau support is critical for education success, Maori teachers also need to do more to ensure students get the most out of the classroom experience.

“Some of the ways we went through in our days doesn’t suit the children now. We need to look at other ways of ensuring our kids gain the passion and receive the magic from the kaiako. If you’re just turning up to receive your pay, you shouldn't be there,” Mrs Park says.


A leading Maori composer says Maori language songwriters won't benefit from a legal showdown between performance right holders and broadcasters.

Phonographic Performances New Zealand, which mainly represents multinational record companies, is trying to triple the share of gross advertising revenue it gets as a royalty from radio stations.

Ruia Aperahama says because the iwi stations which play Maori music are classified as community radio, they are exempt from the royalty regime.

“As a Maori language artist, I’ve never received royalties through iwi radio stations. Now with Maori Television, there’s Maori music playing so you’ve got to ask the question, is any artist getting royalties out of that music from midnight to morning. I know the answer; kao,” Mr Aperahama says.

He says the industry needs to find a better way to create economic stability for performers.

Marae sittings on super city proposal

A series of three hui on the Auckland Governance Legislation starts today at Orakei marae and former Labour MP John Tamihere says Maori need to face the reality of exclusion from an Auckland Super City Council.

Mr Tamihere says the Maori parliamentary subcommittee, chaired by National's Tau Henare, will hear submissions from individuals and groups who believe Maori representation is essential.

He says while the hui are a gracious attempt to appease Maori but ultimately they may have little or no bearing on what the government chooses to legislate.

“The numbers will make the legislation. Now and then submissions from the general public might have an impact, but if you have the numbers in the house you will legislate what you want to legislate,” Mr Tamihere says.

He will make a submission on behalf of the Urban Maori Authority on Friday at Hoani Waititi Marae in Waitakere City.

The other members of the sub-committee are Simon Bridges, Hone Harawira and Shane Jones.


A Maori police officer says the threat of tasers often works as a deterrent meaning the guns don't actually have to be used.

Glen McKay says this was the case on Monday when a taser gun was flown from Auckland to Hamilton to be used in the apprehension of a man who refused to come out of the Waikato river for more than three hours.

“We haven't had to draw the tasers a whole lot. We haven’t had to use them a whole lot because that threat or fear of what people have seen on TV has come back for those we have to pull the taser out, they say ‘I’ve seen what it does and I don’t want to be a part of it,’” Mr Mackay says.

He says the taser was the least lethal option available in Hamilton and everyone walked away including the alleged offender without being hurt.


Around 300 Kaumatua from around the country are on a hikoi to Wellington this week to showcase a bygone era.

Groups from Auckland, Bay of Plenty, Waikato, Gisborne, Hawkes Bay, Wairarapa and Taranaki have been practicing for Te Papa's Kaumatua Kapa Haka festival on Saturday marking Wellington's Matariki Festival.

Producer Mere Boynton says many of the kaumatua have chosen iconic composers from their different rohe to take the audience on a journey back in time.
She says the way the kaumatua perform and the waiata they sing is unlike anything else

“They've selected composers of areas gone by and they are singing their work. The way they’re perform it is so different to kapa haka today. It’s more about improvisation, whakangahau. It seems to be a softer form of kapa haka,” Ms Boynton says.

For the first time, the kaumatua kapa haka will be webcast live online to give whanau around the world a chance to see their kaumatua perform.


Labour leader Phil Goff says a special parliamentary sub-committee to hear Maori submissions on Auckland city goverance is less than ideal but inevitable.

Phil Goff says it is important that the sub-committee go out to marae and hear what Maori are thinking, a process which gets under way today at Orakei marae.

“In a perfect world you’d rather see the whole select committee hear the submissions made by Maori on the question of representation on the super city but I do know the committee, I was on the committee yesterday, it’s working very hard so the establishment of subcommittees to do some of the work is inevitable,” Mr Goff says.

Maori representation on Auckland super city which Labour supports will be a real test for the government as to whether it is listening to what people want.

The government has said it does not support a Royal Commission recommendation for three Maori seats on a 22 member Super city council leading to a hikoi in May during which thousands of people marched to the Auckland City council offices.


Former Labour MP John Tamihere says Winston Peters’ attack on the Foreshore and Seabed Act Review is just political opportunism.

The New Zealand First leader had broken his post-election silence to claim the review panel's recommendations pave the way to separatism.

Mr Tamihere, who played a key role in developing the Act, says because of New Zealand First that Labour was unable to satisfactorily deal with customary rights in the law.

“I resent his reentry on the back of kicking Maori again and stirring up a sense of angst. This guy does not have a pristine history in politics for Maori-related matters. In fact he has used his Maori blood to advance at time a quite contrary view,” Mr Tamihere says.

He says what Mr Peters did in the 1989 Maori loans affair was unforgiveable and his attacks on Labour’s bridging the gaps proposals put a block on Maori growth.


It seems that the Office of the Minister of Treaty Negotiations is now synonymous with parliament.

A call to 018 directory services asking for the number for Parliament receives a request from the operator asking for the location of parliament.

When informed that the New Zealand parliament is based in Wellington, for 50 cents the caller is automatically put through to the office of Chris Finlayson the Minister for Treaty Negotiations, rather than the main switch board.

A spokesperson for Telecom says 018 is no longer a part of Telecom and the 018 directory service is now run by a company called Yellow using a Philippines call centre.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Swine flu hitting young Maori population

Recent figures showing more than half of swine flu patients are Maori or Pacific Islander are cause for concern but not panic, according to a leading Maori health researcher.

Of the 761 confirmed swine flu patients for whom ethnicity is known, 27 percent are Maori, 28 percent Pacific Island, 34 percent European, and 11 percent other ethnicities.

Papaarangi Reid, the deputy Maori dean of Auckland University’s School of Medicine, says because ethnicity has not been recorded in all cases it is not yet clear whether the virus is hitting Maori harder than other ethnic groups.

However she says Maori are more at risk.

“we're a younger population and it is mainly young people who are getting this particular influenza and we’ve got far more risks in terms of our determinants of health so lower access to healthcare services, worse housing, more overcrowding, different access to good food, warm clothing etc at this time of year,” Dr Reid says.

The number of confirmed cases of swine flu sits at 1059 with a national death toll of three.


Maori Party MP Hone Harawira says compensation is not an issue for the Maori Party in resolving issues around the foreshore and seabed legislation.

Mr Harawira, who led the hikoi which resulted in the formation of the party, says individuals within the party, and the party as a collective, are categorical in their view that they did not oppose the foreshore and seabed legislation to get compensation.

“That's something that’s been thrown up by Eddie Durie, I guess by his work as a jurist, in understanding that when you deny people access to something them they have to be compensated for it later on. That’s what happens in Pakeha business circles. That’s what happens everywhere else in life. There’s no reason for assuming it shouldn’t happen for Maori,” Mr Harawira says.

He says compensation will be something for the courts to sort out and is not something the Maori Party is going to worry about.

The review panel was High Court judge and Waitangi Tribunal chair Justice Edward Taihakurei Durie, barrister Richard Boast, and educationalist Hana O'Regan.


The photographer behind a New Plymouth exhibition documenting social reality over the years says the works show how Maori determination to protest perceived injustices has never changed.

The exhibition Photo Histories is showing at New Plymouth's Govett Brewster Art Gallery with images by Mark Adams, Bruce Connew and John Miller from Ngapuhi including Nga Tamatoa, the Land March, the Raglan and Bastion Point Occupations, Waitangi Protests and the Foreshore and Seabed Hikoi.

John Miller says one of the things that stood out was the reemergence of people years later.

“In the land march was a photo of Dave Ruru from the East Coast pushing his little girl Tanya down the motorway into Wellington in a pushchair, and on the wall opposite is a photograph of Tanya, now a grown woman, waving her Ngati Porou flag outside Parliament during the Foreshore and Seabed hikoi,” Mr Miller says.

Other recurring faces include a young Tame Iti at Waitangi in 1972 and in Queen St in 2004, showing how the fight for tino rangatiratanga has not lessened with the passing of time.


Labour leader Phil Goff says if review of the foreshore and seabed legislation becomes about compensation it will not work.

Phil Goff says the National and the Maori parties have flip flopped on the issue of compensation following the review panel saying it was something that should be looked.

He says however now all parties seemed to be in agreement that the issue should not be about compensation.

“I don't think this issue is about compensation and if it becomes focused on compensation I don’t think it’s going to work. This is about finding a resolution between the rights of New Zealanders to have access to the beach, which is fundamental, and the rights of Maori people who have long occupied those areas where appropriate to have customary title and to have their rights acknowledged,” Mr Goff says.

He says there is a real chance of finding a solution and getting a reconciliation between the different views.

Prime Minister John Key has indicated compensation might be excluded from an agreement to recognise Maori customary rights over the foreshore and seabed and Maori party co-leader pita Sharples says he is relaxed about this.


The researcher behind a maths project where Maori pupils are allowed to talk and laugh in class groups while solving sums says the kaupapa Maori approach is working.

Massey education lecturer Bobbie Hunter have been researching year 7 and 8 Maori and pasifika pupils in Auckland to study whether their maths performance and attitude improves when they work in groups.

She says the project is reflective of their larger families and their home life and this is key to their improvements.

“It’s the way they’re brought up. It’s the fact everybody looks out for each other in a Maori or Pasifika family. Then they cOme into a school where maths so often is done, each person is an individual and you’ve got to get the answer right and it’s up to you as an individual so they actually really honouring them working in groups and the value of group work,” Ms Hunter says.

Discussion and laughter are also part of the learning process for Maori pupils, as opposed to traditional classroom etiquette.

She is one of 180 international maths educators at the 32nd international Mathematics Education Australasia conference being held at Massey University’s Wellington campus this week.


New beginnings are being marked by brighter colours for a Ngati Wai/Ngati Manuhiri artist exhibiting at Whetu Rangimarie Gallery in Pakiri over the next two months.

Star Gossage is showing her figurative series of paintings to celebrate the gallery's acknowledgement of the Matariki star cluster and Maori New year.

“They are not necessarily to do with matariki but we hung them for matariki in my auntie’s gallery. I didn’t want to send them off to my galleries. I wanted to show them at home in Pakiri, where all my whanau live,” Ms Gossage says.

TPK tries to unite Tamaki Maori

Te Puni Kokiri is leading the co-ordination of an iwi consortium to represent Maori in Tamaki Makaurau.

Regional director of the Ministry for Maori Development, Pauline Kingi, says several months ago leaders from the two principal iwi, Ngati Whatua and Tainui met with Nga Puhi to discuss the details and undertakings for last weekend's Atamira, Maori in the City.

She says it was timely that discussions of a consortium surfaced.

“An iwi Maori consortium concept of mana whenua and a critical iwi Maori groupings in the Tamaki Makaurau region and so we asked Tainui to carry that and work with us on both the mana whenua side and the taura here side to sew it all up, so there will obviously be further dialogue with the urban Maori authorities as we get that consortium bedded down,” Ms Kingi says.

The formation of an iwi consortium is the beginning of a long term strategy which will ultimately serve Maori at a number of economic and social levels.


Maori Party MP Hone Harawira will seek government support to have a Maori flag distributed to every marae in the country and flown at every New Zealand embassy around the world on Waitangi Day.

A national Maori flag consultation team will begin hui around the country this week seeking views on what flag should represent Maori.

Mr Hawawira says any flag should be widely distributed.

“I recall from the old days, the old people telling me something like the internal affairs department sent flags out to all the marae so I’m going to see if we can get Internal Affairs, whatever the flag is, make up heaps and heaps of them and offer them to every marae in the country,” he says.

Mr Harawira says the flag decision is due by mid-September.


Maori singer Moana Maniapoto and her band are off to Borneo to perform.

And she's expecting a positive response to the environmental and respect for the land messages embodied in her music when the band plays before local tribes.

“We are going to meet some tribal representatives over there and I notice they have been in a big struggle with the government and Indonesia in terms of the palm oil biofuels that is devastating a lot of their lands, so I think we will have a bit in common,” Maniapoto says.


One of the chief negotiators of the $500million CNI deal says the government's attitude bodes well for future settlements.

The so-called Treelords deal which came into force on July 1 and was celebrated at the weekend was negotiated with the Labour government led by Dr Michael Cullen as Treaty Negotiations Minister but the new governent saw the settlerment process through.

Chief Te Arawa negotiator Rawiri Te Whare says the positive attitude was carried on by the new Treaty Negotiations Minister Chris Finlayson.

“The way that National has engaged to date has been very encouraging and I think their attitude to settlements represents a positive side that suggests they also want to see settlements achieved going into the future so I’m very encouraged with discussions we’ve had with ministers to date,” Mr Te Whare says.

The real work managing the forests and wisely investing money received now begins for the CNI collective and individual iwi.


Te Puni Kokiri says Maori businesses need to prepare to shine under the international spotlight during the 2011 Rugby World Cup.

Ministry for Maori Development Rugby spokesman, Paora Amunsden, says Maori culture is what makes Aotearoa unique and tourists will come here wanting to see the sights, learn the culture and take home Maori merchandise.

Mr Ammunsden says during the 2007 Rugby World Cup, French retailers ran out of goods like images of the Eiffel Tower and berets.

He says Maori businesses need to make sure this does not happen here.

“The opportunities for our retail merchandise operators around selling taonga Maori, Maori product, the opportunities for Maori tourism operators. Something in the order of 4.5 billion viewers will watch the tournament so we’ve got a real opportunity to sell Maori inc if you like to the world, to communicate what’s unique and special about our people,” Mr Ammunsden says.

Creating a unique Maori brand associated with the rugby world cup is essential for Maori business to maximise opportunities.


The work of a group which has set up a television station which broadcasts in medical centre waiting rooms and hospitals has been acknowledged with the supreme award for innovation at Atamira - Maori in the City over the weekend.

Travis O'Keefe of Ngati Porou whose company Health TV has been in operation for four years says the aim is to educate people about health issues and not to sell pharmaceuticals.

He says the tool has far wider potential which will only be fully realised with further investment.

Monday, July 06, 2009

Flag on Maungawhau to highlight super city debate

The largest tino rangatiratanga flag in the world will be flying from Maungawhau this week, as the government select committee prepares to hear oral submissions on the future of local governance in Auckland.

Organiser Ngarimu Blair from the Iwi Have Influence action group, says hundreds are expected at dawn vigils at the summit of Mount Eden to show their dissatisfaction at the government's decision not to include Maori seats on the proposed Auckland super council.

He says they were looking to do something more relevant than standing waving placards among the crowds at the select committee hearings.

“So the thought was let‘s go to Auckland’s most visited site where 1.2 million people per annum come, it generates a huge amount of money for the city, it’s the poor man’s skytower to get a view of the city notwithstanding it’s a waahi tapu, a sacred site for many of the tribes of Auckland and for many Aucklanders,” Mr Blair says.

A subcommittee will look into the issue of Maori wards at sittings at Orakei, Te Puea and Hoani Waititi marae, from Wednesday to Friday.


A Maori political commentator is predicting New Zealand First leader Winston Peter's breaking of his silence since the election to criticise the Ministerial Foreshore and Seabed Act review could be the start of a political come back.

Matt Mc Carten says Winston Peter's criticism on the Television One programme "Q & A" at the weekend of the review as the path to separatism is tailor-made for Winston Peters and could have a marked affect on the political scene.

“The Nats and by extension ACT who normally would attack these things, kind of can’t, and Labour’s all over the paddock on it. So their Maori MPs, what’s left of them, say ‘don’t rock the boat’ so no party is going to oppose it because the Greens won’t and this is a tailor-made issue for Winston to make a comeback,” Mr McCarten says.

He says support for Winston Peters on the issue could force the government to back down from a weakening of its stance on separate Maori seats on Auckland super city.


A prison programme manager from Kaikohe says the merits of tikanga-based arts programmes like kapahaka and whakairo are making inroads in connecting prisoners to their whanau.

Mark Lynds is being awarded with a Prison Arts Leadership Award in Parliament tonight, for his work promoting the arts as a vehicle for rehabilitation at the Northern Region Corrections Facility and Auckland Prison.

He says art and cultural knowledge are important keys to restoring the mana of Maori who have lost their way.

“You can physically see a change in the way the men interact. There are less incidents, they’re easier to manage and they become quite positive. Some of the guys have had no contact with whanau for quite a while when they’ve been in here basically because they‘ve pushed their whanau away. It’s not until they reconnect that they start developing the want and need to get back in with their extended whanau,” Mr Lynd says.

The programmes have allowed prisoners’ work to be displayed inside and outside of prisons, raised money for charity through the sale of prison art, and he is in negotiations with several councils around the country to submit whakairo.


One of the chief negotiators of the CNI deal which was celebrated at the weekend with the return of nearly $500 million worth of forests and cash to central north island tribes says the work has only just begun.

Rawiri Te Whare, who was the chief Te Arawa negotiator, says the deal makes iwi the largest forestry owners in the country.

“It's a considerable amount of assets and cash and so brings with it a huge challenge to the leadership of the CNI. The work is only just begun now, putting all the infrastructure and the process and they systems me need to get in place to ensure the steady careful prudent management of these assets,” Mr Te Whare says.

Te Arawa is not in a hurry to spend the money its receives and will be investing it conservatively.


The director of a Maori tobacco-free organisation is calling on the government to increase the tax on loose tobacco to help encourage Maori to quit.

Shane Kawenata Bradbrook says its a myth that loose tobacco is less harmful, with recent research showing people who smoked roll-your-own cigarettes are inhaling up to 28 percent more smoke than those who smoked tailormades.

He says that, coupled with a high Maori smoking population is a recipe of gloom for Maori.

“You increase tax, there’s an incentive there for people to quit. Smokers are price sensitive just like any other consumer, so increase the tax you are going to see people starting to make decisions around quitting and I think that is a massive disincentive for people,” Mr Bradbrook says.

An increase in tax needs to be supported by an increase in access to support services for Maori like Aukati Kai Paipa


An Estimated 120,000 people flocked to Atamira, Maori in the City over the weekend and organisers predict the event will eventually be as big as Pasifika.

Pauline Kingi from Te Puni Kokiri says Atamira started two years ago as a showcase for Maori creative and performing artists.

Ms Kingi says this year's expansion and the inclusion of business, science and innovation was to create strategies for all areas of Maoridom to grow and prosper.

“Pasifika was an important statement of the achievement of Pacific peoples in the New Zealand context. Similarly, Atamira is an important contributor to where Maoridom is moving to. We are now in an economic debate and climate in which Maori are integral to the growth, the expansion for our country,” Ms Kingi says.

Maori target rugby world cup cash-in

Te Puni Kokiri and the Maori Tourism Council are putting a Maori face on the 2011 Rugby World Cup.

TPK ran a seminar during this weekend’s Atamira Maori in the City show in Auckland on how Maori cash in on the thousands of tourists and the billions on television viewers.

Project coordinator Paora Ammundsen says there are groups being formed around each of the 13 game venues to link in to the world cup organising body.

He says Maori are getting excited about the opportunities, but there needs to be a coordinated response.

Paora Ammundsen says he is also working with the Maori language commission Te Taura Whiri on ways te reo Maori can be highlighted on banners, signage and other communications.


A major collection of legal documents in te reo Maori has gone on line.

More than 14,000 pages of 19th century documents with references to Maori situations or concepts have been digitised by Victoria University's electronic text centre.

They include speeches by Maori MPs, land deeds, translations of acts and bills, petitions from Maori and reports of the Native Affairs select committee.

Mamari Stephens, the leader of the Legal Maori Project, Te Kaupapa Reo-a-Ture, says it’s a resource for those who want to use Maori vocabulary to describe Western legal concepts.

She says the documents have been publically available but hard to access until know.

Mamari Stephens says the material has been collected as part of a bigger project to produce a Maori legal dictionary.


Maori are being encouraged to use series of workshops run by Manukau City Libraries and the New Zealand Society of Authors as a way to learn how to get their stories recorded.

Jocelyn Watkin, project manager for Write Around Manukau, says the workshops on different themes will be running at libraries around the city until November.

She says the sessions on oral story-telling may appeal to Maori and spur them to get their words on paper.

The series also includes a session on short story writing run by Ngapuhi author James George.


Maori protest has entered the museum in an exhibition of photography which opened at New Pymouth’s Govett Brewster Art Gallery this weekend.

Photo Histories looks at the way three photographers, Mark Adams, Bruce Connew and John Miller from Ngapuhi, document social reality.

Miller, a familiar figure wherever people have gathered to challenge authority over the past four decades, says his images of Nga Tamatoa, the Land March, the Raglan and Bastion Point Occupations, Waitangi Protests and the Foreshore and Seabed Hikoi are a way Maori can hold on to their own history.

“I just felt at the time it was important these events be recorded. People pass on, a younger generation arises, and it’s really important that they can look at these images and see what happened in the past so they realise where we’ve come from,” Miller says.

The Photo Histories show was opened by Taranaki kaumatua Lindsay McLeod, whose tuakana, the late Eddie McLeod, features in a 1972 image of Nga Tamatoa members on the porch of a Waiomio meeting house.


Nelson iwi have gone into the job-finding business to tackle the high level of high Maori unemployment in the region.

Kimi is a joint venture between Ngati Rarua Atiawa Iwi Trust and Wakatu Incorporation with support from Work and Income, based at Wakatu House.

It will offer advice on careers, training, apprenticeships and study options.

Project manager Jenny van Workum says while the long term focus is to get more Maori into middle and senior management positions, it is also important to encourage participation in training and education at all levels.

“We are wanting people to go into particular industry groups so particularly in Nelson Marlborugh we are focused on aquaculture, horticulture, viviculture, tourism, so we are keen people get the right skills and training in those areas to put them in a place to get good job opportunities into the future,” van Workum says.

Kimi will work closely with employers so it can ensure Maori are getting appropriate training for what’s available in the region.


The select committee on Auckland governance starts a marathon session in the city today to hear the thousands of people who want their submissions heard.

Maori who don’t want to join the crush at Parnell’s Barrycourt conference centre can go to Orakei Marae, Te Puea Marae and Hoani Waititi later in the week.

Maori Party MP Hone Harawira says a special subcommittee will hear formal submissions in the morning sessions, then open up the floor in the afternoons.

“It’s going to be like an open forum on any marae so people can feel comfortable getting up. I mean, we’re not really comfortable writing submissions. Some of us are, but most of us aren’t, and you can tell from the hikoi that people will give their energy in different ways, so what we are saying is be a Maori, come to the marae and tell us what you have to say,” says Mr Harawira, whose Tai Tokerau electorate includes Rodney district, North Shore City and parts of Waitakere City.