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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Friday, July 30, 2010

Undignified exit prongs stark contrast

Former Alliance president Matt McCarten says the events that led to Te Atatu MP Chris Carter's expulsion from the Labour caucus are in stark contrast to the way list MP Shane Jones handled his demotion around ministerial expenses.

The Unite Union leader says while Mr Jones made a genuine apology and set about rebuilding his political career, Mr Carter has nursed a grudge against Phil Goff which culminated in his distribution of an anonymous attack against his party leader.

“He's obviously held onto it and you compare that with Shane Jones of course who was also demoted, more severely I might add, at the time and he was looking round for more people to apologise to so you kind of have the two extremes,” Mr McCarten says.

He says Mr Carter's expulsion should not harm Labour if it is handled well.


It's National Poetry day, and the South Auckland Poetry Collective is marking the occasion by launching its first CD and book, Something Worth Reading.

Member Grace Taylor says the predominantly Maori and Polynesian group started two years ago.

She says many of the rangatahi who got involved were surprised at how passionate they found themselves getting about poetry.

As the group has grown, so has the poets' confidence to perform their work in public.


A member of the Maori language strategy review group announced yesterday by Maori Affairs Minister Pita Sharples, Pem Bird, says its mahi should lead to better value for the $225 million spent each year in the sector.

Hai taa tumuaki tautoohito a Pem Bird tetahi kei roto i te roopu raa...kia tika nga tohanga me nga whakaritenga hai whakatupu i te reo.

The seven-member group, which is chaired by academic Tamati Reedy, is due to report early next year.


As te Wiki o Te reo Maori winds down for another year, Whale rider star Rawiri Paratene says over the past 40 years Aotearoa has completely changed in its acceptance of the Maori language.

As an 18 year old in 1972 the Ngapuhi actor took part in Nga Tamatoa's protest on the steps of parliament which set in motion the Maori language revival.

He says it began with small steps such as getting television newsreaders to say "kia ora".

Je says some people objected a “foreign” language was being heard on the television.

He's made a commitment to his grand-children to improve his ability to speak Maori.


The All Blacks take on the Wallabies in Melbourne tomorrow night, but blindside flanker Liam Messam from Ngai Tuhoe isn't making the trip.

He's turning out instead for home province Waikato against Bay of Plenty in an ITM Cup clash at Waikato Stadium.

The New Zealand Maori captain says he'll rejoin the All Black squad next week, but his temporary omission gives him some overdue whanau time to spend with his son, after five weeks away with the All Blacks and the New Zealand Maori.


Tuhoe songwriter Ngatapa Black is thrilled her song He Maimai Aroha has been nominated as a finalist in the contemporary Maori music section of the APRA Maioha Awards.

Hai taana...he wawata ano kei roto i a ia mo nga tau kei te tuu mai.

The other Maioha nominations are for Jamie Greenslade's song Sin City as performed by maitreya and Ahorangi Winitana for Óku Máreikura.

Praise for student health scheme

The director of a scheme to increase the number of Maori entering the health workforce says it works because students get the real oil from health workers.

Incubator, which targets about 30 low decile schools in Hawkes Bay, Taranaki and Northland with high Maori rolls, has won praise from a Massey University evaluation team.

Wynn Schollum from the Hawke’s Bay District Health Board says Incubator differs from typical career talks in the way the workers are able to share job stories.

“They don't (normally) speak to people about what they do at work. In this environment they can. The experience is brought from the health sector right into the classroom where they learn abut what it’s like to work in health, who you work with, what your opportunities are,” Mr Schollum says.

A marae-based version of Incubator will be rolled out in the coming months.


The trainier of crews for a fleet of double-hulled waka aims to put indigenous skippers at the helm as soon as possible.

Rob Hewitt, a former navy diver who survived three days in the sea off Porirua, has just returned from a four month journey which took in French Polynesia, the Cook Islands, Samoa and Tonga.

He says while all the Maori crew on the six waka had day skipper's tickets issued by the New Zealand Coastguard, they didn't have the ocean-going qualifications to take full control.

“Here we are on indigenous wakas with indigenous peoples so why not have indigenous leaders and skippers on board. A the moment we have skippers from Sweden, France, America, around the world except where they are born and bred from,” Mr Hewitt says.

The waka voyage aims to highlight the environmental degradation of the Pacific.


The chief executive of south Waikato iwi Ngati Raukawa is welcoming the introduction of a bill which will give Raukawa, Tuwharetoa and Te Arawa a say in the management of the Waikato River.

Chris McKenzie says Ngati Raukawa hopes to work with farmers along the river, including many Maori land trusts, to clean up the river.


An Auckland University sociologist says police are more likely to taser Maori than other New Zealanders.

Dr Bruce Cohen says in Britain and the United States minority groups have been far more likely to be zapped during relatively minor incidents.

He says when the New Zealand police trialed the weapon in 2006 and 2007, 29 percent of those tasered were Maori despite making up just 15 percent of the population.

“I've no doubt that Maori are likely to be targeted in the future with tasers so we take taser out of the equation, we all know about Maori being over-represented in the prison population, also those coming before the courts,” Dr Cohen says

He says more than 300 deaths in the United States have been directly attributed to taser use, and it is only a matter of time before a Maori dies as a result of a police taser.


Maori singer-songwriter Hinewehi Mohi has welcomed a deal between Maori broadcast funding agency Te Mangai Paho and the Phonographic Performers Association of New Zealand for iwi stations to pay Maori composers and musicians royalties for use of their material.

The data collected will allow an independant iwi radio chart to be published, which could create wider interest in the most popular waiata.

Ms Mohi says contemporay reo Maori musicians struggle to get wider airplay, but the chance to get some income from iwi radio play could encourage the production of more material.

“It's a fantastic boost for Maori artists particularly those performing in te reo Maori which doesn’t get a lot of mainstream airplay and a certain kind of person writing, composing, recording music for kaupapa Maori and the kinds of sounds that iwi radio are playing so this is really great,” says Ms Mohi from Ngati Kahungunu.


Waikato University reo professor Pou Temara, who is in Hawaii gauging language revitalisation projects, says Hawaiian and te reo Maori face similar challenges of finding enough competent teachers, particularly at the early childhood level.

Hei taa Temara...ko te mohiotanga o nga kaiako tetahi o nga tino aarai ki te tupu o nga reo.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Tainui inland port best use for land

The chief executive of Tainui Group Holdings says an inland port is the best use for former agricultural research land at Ruakura which was returned to Waikato Tainui in its treaty settlement.

Mike Pohio says once development of The Base at Te Rapa is complete, the company's attention will shift to the 300 hectares on the southeast fringe of Hamilton.

The former Port of Tauranga executive says the government's $800 million investment in the Waikato Expressway, which will cross the Hamilton-Tauranga rail line at Ruakura, makes the land ideal spot for a distribution and logistics hub.

“When I came it was allocated for residential subdivision based on the fact that there had been previous success and continues to be success in residential subdivision. But when you look at the scale of land, look at the infrastructure, look at the wider picture of trade flows, it did and remains sensible outcome not just for TGH but for wider public interests,” Mr Pohio says.

While existing developments like the $120 Te Awa mall at Te Rapa and the hotel at Auckland International Airport have used bank debt, in future the tribe may issue its own bonds to better match its investment and income stream.


An Auckland trust expects up to 1500 disadvantaged women and their children to turn up for some serious pampering tonight.

The Life Centre Trust's Streetreach programme offers support for sex workers, sufferers of domestic violence and women in refuges.

Coordinator Debbie Baker says the annual pamper night aims to give vulnerable women a pick me up with donations of make-up, beauty products, gifts and food.

“So it's not just about the street girls, it’s about women who just need a night of care, need a night away from the environment they’re in. Unfortunately the problem is getting worse out there. There’s a lot of Maori women and people from all walks of life affected by abuse,” Ms Baker says.


As police lay charges against a 30-year-old man in relation to the death yesterday of his partner's six-month-old son, Hone Kaa from the anti abuse group Te Kaahui Mana Ririki is calling for more support for new mothers and their families to help protect against child abuse.

Hai taana...me whakawhaanui te kupenga aawhina ki nga whaea me oo ratou tamariki:


Ngati Raukawa's chief executive says allowing iwi from the upper Waikato River to join the co-management regime will help in the clean up of the awa.

A bill adding Ngati Tuwharetoa, Raukawa and Te Arawa had its first reading last night.

Chris McKenzie says all iwi on the river are keen to work together on the $210 million project.

“On the Crown's watch the river has degraded to a state of pollution that’s unseen in the history of the river but good on them for identifying we need to do something about it, that we need to work together, so I do credit this gove4rnment and the previous government for that realization,” Mr McKenzie says.

He McKenzie says it has taken several generations to pollute the river to its current state, and it will take generations until it's safe to drink the water again.


Auckland iwi are condemning the damage to archaelogical sites by council contractors working on Auckland's maunga.

Eru Thompson from Te Kawerau a Maki and Tainui says the Auckland City Council is failing to consult iwi, as it is required to under the volcanic cones management agreement.

He says maunga over the isthmus have been scarred by badly-conceived maintenance projects such as fences, and the council needs to be made accountable.


Meanwhile Ngarimu Blair, the environment manager for Ngati Whatua ki Orakei, says the Auckland City Council needs to do more to protect the city's archeological sites.

Hai taa Ngaarimu Blair ko Maungarei ko Owairaka ko Remuera me Puketaapapa etahi o nga maunga kua tuukinotia:


The Waiata Maori Awards are getting a revamp to acknowledge the growth in urban Maori music.

The awards will be announced at a concert at the Hawkes Bay Opera House in September.

Organiser Tama Huata says the urban category has been split, with a separate category created for reggae.

He says many of the artists are recording in garages, and the awards are a chance to reach a wider audience.

Tainui turns $34m profit

Land revaluations and returns from residential property sales have lead to a $16 million turn around in the fortunes of Waikato Tainui.

Tainui Group Holdings has ridden out the recession and last night opened the first stage of its $120 million Te Awa Mall development at the Base in te Rapa.

Last year the global financial crisis knocked the value of Tainui’s property portfolio and forced it to curtail housing development, resulting in a $27 million loss.

In the year to March 31 it turned that around, booking a $34.1 million profit.

More importantly, net operating profits improved from $11.9 million to $15.6 million, allowing it to comfortably pay a $10 million dividend to its Waikato-Tainui shareholder.

The fully-tenanted mall was opened last night by Prime Minister John Key, and stages two and three, which include a digital cinema complex, will be completed over the next 18 months

Chief executive Mike Pohio says income is stable, giving the tribe a solid base for development.


The chairman of Ngati Raukawa Settlement Trust Chris McKenzie says agreement to co-manage the Waikato River has brought iwi along the river together.

Mr McKenzie says the first reading of the Ngati Tuwharetoa, Raukawa and Te Arawa River Iwi Waikato River Bill in parliament last night (Wednesday) was hugely significant for the tribes’ kaumatua, many of whom traveled to Wellington for the occasion.

“The treaty process is a divisive process and in many instances tribes have to prove boundaries and once you start talking about boundaries you are buying into a fight. We’ve been very pragmatic in this settlement and we’ve said let’s not talk about boundaries from the beginning, let’s make the focus the river, and that’s why we’ve been successful,” Mr McKenzie says.

The bill which follows earlier agreement between Waikato-Tainui and the Crown will allow the clean-up of the river to proceed in haste.


A Ngati Porou kuia says the East Coast iwi is still riled at continued lack of Government consultation over a mining application for the East Cape area from Whanarua Bay to Waiomatatini.

E kii ana a kuia Sue Nikora o te Tairaawhiti...ko te rohe moana o Raukumara ano he tauira o nga tikanga a te Kaawanatanga:


Tainui Group Holdings has unveiled ambitious plans to develop an inland port on land it owns at Ruakura.

The plan comes as the tribe is showing momentum as it moves out of difficult financial times.

Last night Prime Minister John Key cut the ribbon on the first stage of TYe Awa, a $120 mall at The Base in Te Rapa.

The rents will further boost the Tainui Group Holdings balance sheet, which in the year to March 31 showed a $34 million net profit compared to a $27 million loss the previous year.

Chief executive Mike Pohio says once the development of the tribe’s land on Hamilton’s northern fringe is complete, its focus will shift to the southeast.

He says the tribe’s 400 hectares at Ruakura lie at the junction of the planned Waikato Expressway and the Hamilton-Tauranga rail line.

That makes it ideal for an inland port surrounded by warehouses and light industry.

Target date for the development is 2018.


Waiheke Island Maori are thrilled at an environment court decision stopping building on a site they see as sacred and ecologically significant.

The decision overturns permission the Spencer family had from Auckland City Council to erect two houses as part of their Man o' War vineyard at Owhiti Bay on the eastern tip of the island.

Piritahi marae committee chairman Wally Manahi says it was a hard fought victory.

“Hopefully this will stop all these people from trying to build on our urupa and all thatm” he says.

The site is one of many the iwi has been fighting to have protected.


With the failure of Wairiki MP Te Ururoa Flavell to win enough support for his private bill amending the Public Works Act, a long serving secretary of the Tuhoe Maori Trust Board says that wasn't the only way Maori lost their land over the past century, and a raft of other legislation was just as damaging.

Hai taa te tiamana o mua o te Poari Maori o Tuuhoe a Tama Niikora...
kaua e pooheehee ko te Ture Mahinga Haapori anake te puutake o te raruraru:

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

PM expects change without intervention

The Prime Minister expects the changing demographics of the New Zealand population to eventually be reflected in local government.

The fact Maori make up only 5.5 percent of elected local government officials, despite being 15 percent of the overall population, has raised concerns at this week's Local Government New Zealand conference.

John Key says tertiary education will be the gateway to community leadership roles for Maori.

“We're seeing much better participation rates of Maori for instance at school and universities and wananga and the likes and they’re doing better and I think the natural consequence of that is that they will assume management roles and leadership roles and we are seeing that in the state sector, some Maori coming through and doing really really well,” Mr Key says.

He doesn’t favour legislated incentives such as dedicated Maori seats on councils.


A Waikato University doctoral student is trying to find ways to convert oxygen weed that is clogging up parts of the Waikato River and the Rotorua lakes into energy.

Shane Carter has won a $107,000 Foundation for Sciences Te Tipu Putaiao Fellowship for the work.

The former waste management engineer says he's confident of developing an anaerobic process to turn the harvested weed into methane gas.

“It’s ideally suited to taking an iwi group that might have part of a river or a lake they are looking at managing that they can manage the invasive weed control and by making energy it either becomes cost neutral or it actually makes a profit and at the same time the gas can be used say to power a local marae or houses and supply a bit of employment,” Mr Carter says.

While his process may not lead to a total clean up of the lakes and river, it could go along way to solving the weed problem.


Labour MP Kelvin Davis says local and central government need to engage with Taitokerau iwi about their plans to open up parts of Northland for mining.

Hai taa Kelvin Davis o Reipa, kua tae ki te waa ki te hui tahi nga roopu whai paanga.


Greens co-leader Metiria Turei says New Zealand can follow the example of its Pacific whanaunga and restrict the sale of land to foreign buyers.

The party has a private members bill ready which seeks to restrict the sale of farm blocks greater than five hectare.

Ms Turei says Maori have been in the forefront of trying to stop the loss of significant sites, such as the protests over the sale Young Nick's Head or Nga Kuri o Paoa near Gisborne.

“If our land starts getting sold off more and more to overseas interests we just don’t have control over our own environment or our own economy. We can’t afford to lose that control. For Maori in particular it’s about retaining their land and also prioritizing Maori interests in land, and that was one of the issues around Nga Kuri o Paoa as well,” she says.

Ms Turei says the rules of the Overseas Investment Commission need to be tightened.


Maori Party leader Tariana Turia is expecting tough talk from the UN's top official on indigenous issues about Maori poverty and access to justice.

UN Special rapporteur James Anaya spent last week in the country talking to Maori groups and Crown ministers and officials.

Mrs Turia says while Professor Anaya was measured in his comments before he left, she is confident he won't shy away from highlighting the areas that need action.

“I know he has been stunned about the high Maori incarceration rate, poor health stats, poor educational achievement. One has to take responsibility for it. Those of us who are part of government, we are the ones that have to stand up and be counted on these issues,” Mrs Turia says.

She says third world living conditions are leading to unacceptably high rates of illnesses like rheumatic fever rates among Maori.


Still on that topic, Tuhoe activist Tame Iti says the iwi felt it had a good hearing from United Nations special rapporteur James Anaya about the Operation 8 terror raids and the prime minister's veto of part of its treaty settlement, and it hopes the Government will heed his eventual recommendation.

Hai taa Tame Iti o Tuhoe, kaahore he utu o te korero, kaahore he utu o te whakarongo:

Sharples rules out 90 day trial support

Pita Sharples says his Maori Party is implacably opposed to probation periods for new employees.

The government has signaled it will extend the 90-day trial to all workplaces as part of a package of industrial law changes.

Dr Sharples says his party opposed the original fire at will bill in 2008 which applied to workplaces with under 20 people, and it doesn't want see it extended to larger sites where most of New Zealand's workforce is employed.

“It is based an unfair idea that you can (say) ‘come work for me for 90 days, we’ll see how we go, if I want you I’ll keep you. If I don’t you go and I don’t have to tell you why.’ That cannot ever be fair so while it does have economic advantages for the employer, I do not consider it to be fair and the Maori Party will never support that,” he says.

Dr Sharples says the Government has failed to prove the existing bill has created job opportunities for young Maori.


Te Atiawa has removed the outer part of the Tory Channel from its application for a mataitai customary fisheries reserve in the busy Marlborough Sounds waterway.

Kaitiaki Sharon Gemmell says at the request of commerical fishers, several bays at the entrance of the channel were dropped from the area the iwi wants to control.

“Fishermen were saying that when they come in from being out in the Cook Strait they need to be able to come in, they’re still doing a few of the commercial activities like cleaning out their boats, rigging their boats again, they needed somewhere to do that and it’s the safety aspect more than anything else,” Mrs Gemmell says.

Te Atiawa hopes the concessions will allow the Mataitai reserve, which was first applied for in 2005, to finally win approval from the Ministry of Fisheries.


The mayor of Gisborne, Meng Foon, says the fact only 5 percent of council representatives are Maori is an issue of concern at this week's Local Government New Zealand hui.

Hai taa te koromatua o Tuuranga a Meng Foon he maaharahara nui te ruarua o nga kanohi Maori:


A leading education researcher has backed a call by a ministry official for schools to embrace the Ka Hikitea Maori strategy.

Apryll Parata, the deputy secretary for Maori education, told a School Trustees Association conference this month that the strategy, along with national standards, was part of the tool kit schools should be using to lift Maori achievement.

Stuart McNaughton from Auckland University's Woolf Fisher Education Research Centre says his team has been studying how the strategy does help raise achievement levels.

He says of critical importance is its mantra of Maori succeeding as Maori.

“Sometimes it's like us being fish in the aquarium and not being able to see what we’re swimming in. Internationally there is a huge amount of interest in that policy because it put the cultural aspiration to the forefront of the educational achievement, so if we can get it right and get it working well and the resources as part of this, we could be a world leader,” Professor McNaughton says.

He says schools need help to analyse the mass of data they get about their students so they can understand which programmes or interventions best suit their students.


Taki Rua Theatre is on the road for the next 10 weeks taking Maori language drama to schools around the motu.

Director Ngapaka Emery says the new production, Te Matapihi O Te Ao, draws on stories from the 15 years the Wellington-based company has made the hikoi.

She says it's not just kohanga and kura who are taking the opportunity to see actors Nepia Takuira-Mita, Karl Teariki, Paulette Hansen and Tiki Daniela tread the boards, with many mainstream schools with immersion units signing up.

As well as the performance, the actors will run workshops to encourage participation in the performing arts..


The Maori Language Commissioner, Erima Henare, says the road toward the total revitalisation of the Maori language will be a long one.

Hai taa te tiamana o te Taura Whiri i te Reo Maori a Erima Henare...
he roa tonu te hiikoi kei mua i te Maori:

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Greens draft land sale ban bill

The Greens have got the jump on the Maori Party, submitting a private members bill which would bar sales of more than 5 hectares of land to foreigners.

Maori Party MP Hone Harawira has said he was considering drafting a similar bill.

Greens' co-leader Russel Norman says he hopes the Maori Party will support the move.

“I think that a lot of Maori would be very supportive of it. I hope the Maori Party will support it given Hone’s statement and I think a lot of New Zealanders more generally would support it,” he says.

Mr Norman says the Overseas Investment Act defines any rural block over 5 hectares as sensitive, so making it illegal to sell such land to overseas interests would only require a simple amendment.

The Prime Minister, John Key, has also indicated the Government is concerned about the appetite of overseas buyers for productive land here, and it will be considered as part of the current review of the overseas investment regime.


Former rugby league super star Tawera Nikau plans to take part in the New York marathon.

Mr Nikau, who lost a leg in a motor bike accident 6 years ago, has just had a new carbon fibre artificial limb fitted.

He's training hard for the November event, helped by the Achilles Foundation which helps disabled people back into mainstream events.

“Once you get through the pain barrier and it goes numb, it’s not too bead. My leg will probably be chafed up but with a lot of Vaseline and hopefully in there I’ll carry in my backpack and if anything starts getting a little sore I’ll be able to manage and get through anyway,” Mr Nikau says.

An increasing number of Maori are losing limbs because of complications from diabetes, and need to be encouraged to maintain an active life.


The Te Reo advisor for this year's New Zealand Post Book Awards says the absence of entries in the Maori language section may be a temporary situation, with potential authors busy on other projects like film and television.

Heoi ano hai taa kaiwhakawaa Paul Diamond, a tera tau ano he tau:

He says thought needs to be given to the kind of books people would want to read in Te reo Maori.


The Maori Party candidate for Ikaroa Rawhiti says he's looking forward to being part of a future coalition government.

Na Raihania, who chairs Poverty Bay iwi Ngai Tamanuhiri, was selected at the weekend to contest the seat held by Labour's Parekura Horomia.

He says unlike Mr Horomia, the Maori Party does not need to ask permission of a wider caucus to develop policy, and it can advocate for Maori at a higher level.

“Where we think we should be is that coalition spot. That sot can only be for the Maori Party. Tat way we get to have whoever gets to have the most votes in a general election. They then have to come and korero to us kanohi ki te kanohi and that’s your true partnership, that’s your true Treaty of Waitangi, that relationship there has got to be right, Mr Raihania says.

He will campaign on the needs of whanau.


A programme to maintain the distinctive mita of the Whanganui people is building up the confidence or those standing on the river's marae.

Lead tutor Esther Tanirau says the one-year Nga Muka O Te Reo O Whanganui course brings together fluent speakers to learn their regional dialect and the iwi's connections to other tribes.

The students are then encouraged to go back into their own hapu to revitalise the reo.

Ms Tanirau says many on the course grew up outside the rohe.

“We haven't had the privilege nor the access growing up as native speakers of our language in our mita in our tribal region but Nga Muka O Te Reo O Whanganui aims to instill in our uri not only who they are but also our language features with respect to Whanganui,” Ms Tinirau says.

The course is based on one in Taranaki, which has similar dialectical features.


The chair of the Te Atiawa group trying to set up a customary fisheries reserve in the Marlborough Sounds, Joe Puketapu, says commercial fishers should have faith in the process rather than try to fight the iwi and the Ministry of Fisheries.

Hai taa Joe Puketapu o te roopu maataitai, kei te haere tonu nga korero a te iwi:

Flavell salvages hope from Public Works bill setback

Maori Party MP Te Ururoa Flavell says his private members bill amending the Public Works Act would have benefited Maori and Pakeha landowners alike.

The Bill, which would have required the return of land taken for public works but not used for the intended purpose, failed to get past its second reading last week.

Only the Maori Party and the Greens voted in favour.

But Mr Flavell says he's put the issue squarely on the public agenda.

“All the people who spoke to it in the first reading understood it, they came up with examples in their own whakapapa, their own background about how the Public Works Act had impacted on them, and while the select committee wasn’t prepared to go past the second reading and voted it down, they all accepted there was an issue there and perhaps a better way to go was a review of the Public Works Act,” Mr Flavell says.


Maori Party co-leader Tariana Turia says if Maori are to survive as a people their language needs to survive.

She says the fight to have Maori recognised as an official language and given government support has had some impressive results.

But since the revival was started in the early 1970s, the number of speakers has fallen.

“There were over 70,000 fluent Maori speakers at that time in the 70s and we are now down to 18,000. That’s very sad and I think what it highlights for us is if we are to survive as a people, our language has to survive as well,” Mrs Turia says.

She says she is one of those people who can understand a lot of reo Maori but doesn't have the confidence to use it.

Research by Te Taura Whiri i Te reo Maori indicates 54 percent of Maori can follow a conversation in te reo, but only 7 percent are completely confident about using it in any situation.


A leading member of the Maori Council, Maanu Paul, says the Government mustn't ignore the recommendations of the United Nations special rapporteur on indigenous issues, James Anaya, who was in the country last week talking to Maori and Crown officials.

E kii ana a Maanu Paul o te Kaunihera Maori, e kore e taea te karo nga raruraru o te Maori.


The Maori Party's candidate for Ikaroa Rawhiti says seeing the world through Maori eyes is one of the most valuable things the party can bring to the country.

Na Raihania, the chair of Poverty Bay iwi Ngai Tamanuhiri, was picked to challenge Labour's Parekura Horomia through a series of hui of party members throughout the electorate, which goes from the East Cape to Wainuiomata.

The 48-year-old says he brings to the task his experience in health, education, unionism, and most importantly Maori development.

“We need to attack the world through the eyes of Maoridom and those tikanga that we’ve got. That’s what is going to carry us through. For years and years we’ve been told to be more Pakeha than Maori and if you look at the statistics particularly in crime, health, all the negative stuff, we fill those far too much. We’ve got to tip those scales back in our favour and we do that by relying on ourselves and making this world our world through our mechanisms,” Mr Raihania.


A powhiri in just over an hour will welcome 41 teams to the biennial New Zealand Secondary schools Kapa Haka Championships at the Rotorua Energy Events Centre.

Darrel Pene from Rotorua Boys High, the chair of the organising committee, says the event has grown steadily from the original 16 roopu a decade ago.

He says it's a chance for rangatahi to celebrate their maoritanga and mix with other kapahaka kids.

The only other times Maori kids will get together is the Manu Korero speech competitions, which this year will be held at Dunedin later in the term.

Darrel Pene says the standard of the performances has been rising steadily.


A veteran Maori language teacher says Te Taura Whiri researchers who estimated only 7 percent of Maori are confident about using the language don't spend enough time the communities where te reo is spoken.

E kii ana a kaumaatua Kepa Stirling from te Whanau a Apanui ... kei te hee rawa atu tera tatauranga.

Monday, July 26, 2010

ScHolarships to improve education achievement

The head of Auckland University's Woolf Fisher Education Research Centre says schools which are able to understand their own practices and results are better able to help their Maori students achieve.

The centre is offering four one-year scholarships a year over the next five years for working teachers to finish their masters degrees by working on projects around student achievement.

Professor Stuart McNaughton says a 12-year research programme has identified the way the mass of data collected by schools can be turned to good effect for Maori students.

“It's to do with the capability of schools to look at their own evidence to understand the information on achievement patterns, to look into their classrooms and use that to fine tune and innovate their programme of researches. It’s like a research and development capability within the schools,” Professor McNaughton says.

One aim of the scholarships is to develop a group of teachers who can roll out research-based programmes into the school system that will raise the achievement of children from Maori, Pacific and low socioeconomic communities.


Maori affairs minister Pita Sharples is backing a "Bring back Buck" campaign to have former All Black captain Wayne (Buck) Shelford made a rugby World Cup ambassador.

A vacancy has opened up with the resignation of Andy Haden.

Dr Sharples says when the idea of ambassadors first came up, he put forwards the names of Buck Shelford, Zinzan Brooke and Taine Randle.

“Great captains, done a great deal for New Zealand rugby and I promoted them, right at the beginning to be in the role and still none of them have been appointed so I’m at a loss to know what’s going on here because those guys, second to none, have certainly led the rugby world for quite some time,” he says.


A former Maori Language Commission chief executive says funding for Maori language promotion is inconsistent and subject to the budgetary whims of other government departments.

Hai taa Haami Piripi...ko wai ka mohio ki te rahi o te puutea ka whiwhi ia tau, ia tau mo te oranga o te reo.


Maori Party co-leader Tariana Turia has used the Maori Language Week to speak of the personal experiences which left he unable to speak te reo Maori.

Mrs Turia says her mother was of a generation that was silenced because they were physically punished for speaking Maori at school.

“She never used the reo, in all the years she lived, I never once heard my mother use the reo. We were never encouraged towards the reo from her own personal experience, from the experience of my aunts who raised me, they didn’t want us kids to go through the kinds of things they went through,” Mrs Turia says.

Although she understands a considerable amount ot te reo she does not have the confidence to use it.


Meanwhile, the Maori Party has selected Ngai Taamanuhiri chairman Naa Raihania to take on Labour's Parekura Horomia in Ikaroa Raawhiti at next year's election.

The former PSA president says the number one challenge for Maori is to strengthen the family.

E kii ana a Raihania...haaunga ano nga wero nunui o te waa, kotahi te arotahi matua:


Green MP David Clendon isn't taking no for an answer over whether Maori have a right to a share in oil and gas under New Zealand's continental shelf.

Mr Clendon got the one-word answer last week when he asked Energy Minister Gerry Brownlee if the Government intended to consider Te Aupouri's claims to resources off 90-Mile beach which are being opened up for prospecting.

He doesn't accept the Government's assertion that the International law of the Sea and the Continental Shelf Act rule out treaty claims.

“This is a very live issue and if there is wealth to be extracted it would seem clear both under treaty and under international law that Maori should get a reasonable claim, a reasonable royalty from that wealth,” Mr Clendon says.

Mining consultation lacking face to face touch

Maori affairs minister Pita Sharples says the Government needs to set a higher standard for consultation if it is to win Maori support for its mining plans.

The Government has clashed with iwi groups in East Coast and Northland over whether iwi were properly advised about exploration licenses.

Dr Sharples says people are talking past each other.

"Mining companies say ‘we have consulted.’ Government says ‘we have consulted.’ And when they get down to the people they say they haven’t been consulted. I think there’s different cultures in terms of hat constitutes consultation. Our way is of course kanohi ki te kanohi, face to face and sit down and explain the entire limitations if you like, the boundaries of the exercise that is intended,” he says.

Dr Sharples says each iwi has rangatiratanga rights over its area and should have the right to decide whether mining can be allowed.


A former gang member in Kawerau is using boxing to show rangatahi there are options outside of gangs.

Mongrel Mobster turned sports tutor Warrick Godfrey’s Fight For the Future events pit police, firefighters and rugby players against sports students from Te Wananga o Aotearoa ki Kawerau, most of them from at risk groups or with previous clashes with the law.

Co-ordinator Casey Ngatai say the main draw for the next event on August 17 is a tag bout between sports stars Karl Te Nana and Wairangi Koopu against Owen Guttenbiel and Russell Harrison.

“In Kawerua we’ve got a lot of youth that are wanting to join the gangs and so we’re trying to send a positive message to basically tell them there are other things you can do rather than join the gang,” Ms Ngatai says.


Maori organisations who use macrons as a guide to correct pronunciation could use Maori Language Week to upgrade their web addresses.

From today the New Zealand Internet registry will be able to add macrons to address files.

Domain name commissioner Debbie Monahan says holders of existing names have had three months to apply for macronised versions of those names, and from now on addresses will be assigned on a first come, first served basis.

“You can apply to register a domain name now and if you have got a Maori word you can say exactly how it should look with a macronised vowel. For example we now have dot Maori dot nz as a second level domain name. They will both be able to be accessed with a macronised A or a non-macronised A,” she says.


The United Nations special rapporteur on indigenous rights says he will be raising concerns about the treaty settlement process in his report on New Zealand.

James Anaya spent last week meeting with Maori and Crown officials, including the Minister for Treaty Negotiations and some of the lead negotiators.

He says while some progress has been made on his predecessor Rudolfo Stavenhagen’s recommendation to repeal the Foreshore and Seabed Act, there are clearly problems with the way claims are settled.

“I do note certain initiatives by the government to improve the process. There seems to be a resolve by the government to move forward with those. I do have concerns, questions about that and I will be addressing that in my report,” Professor Anaya says.

He says the Treaty of Waitangi is a unique model of co-existence and self-determination which puts New Zealand in a better position than many other countries.


A former chief librarian for the Alexander Turnbull Library says the way the National Library and National Archives are being merged with Internal Affairs will demean the mana of some of the country’s most treasured taonga.

Jim Traue says the 2003 National Library Act aimed to protect the treasures in the Alexander Turnbull in perpetuity.

But he says the latest reorganization, which the Government claims will save $166,000 a year, treat the items merely as civic information.

“Example the originals of Nga Moteatea, which are in the Turnbull Library, have got, according to this Government, no more mana than the electoral rolls. Sir Apirana Ngata’s letter, again in the Turnbull Library, Sir Peter Buck’s letters, they have got no more mana than the census records,” Mr Traue says


It’s Maori Language Week, and Plunket is reaching out to Maori speakers with a first Tots and Toddlers early childhood unit allowing secondary school students to “Demonstrate knowledge of the needs of young children” in te reo Maori.

Sue Grant, the organisation’s national parenting advisor, says it’s the first of the NZQA-recognised training units to be translated by Plunket’s Maori Health Services Team.

She says the units aim to give students a dose of reality about parenting and focuses on pre-schoolers’ developmental needs.