Waatea News Update

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Friday, September 24, 2010

Pragmatism to fore in water carve up

A lawyer who has helped lead Maori consultation of water issues says a new report by the Land and Water Forum reflects the pragmatic approach Maori are keen to take with regard to the country's fresh water resource.

Willie te Aho says the involvement of members of the Iwi Leaders Group on the forum meant Maori were able to explain the importance of water to the culture.

He says some oversight is needed on the way property rights are being created from use rights, such as the way the Waikato Regional Council treats resource consent holders who don't use their full allocation of water.

“Environment Waikato have regulations allowing people to trade those. Now that’s creating a commercial right, and what Maori have been saying is that get the context right but ultimately ensure that you’re not prejudicing our future ability,” Mr Te Aho says.

The Land and Water Forum recommended that iwi be given equal involvement in a new body which would exercise governance over water management.


One of the organisers of this week's Manu Korero secondary school speech competitions says it was great for Dunedin's Maori students.

Komene Cassidy says there has not been a Maori event of that scale since Te Maori came to Dunedin 20 years ago.

“For our kids to be involved in an event of this nature, they have to go to the North Island to do it so we only get to send a few, a van load or two van loads each time. So for it to come to us meant that all of our kids got to experience what it was like to be part of a haka powhiri or part of an event of this size. I think it was galvanising for them,” he says.

All the big prizes went north, with Herea Winitana from Tuwharetoa taking the Pei Te Hurinui Jones Trophy for best senior Maori speaker.

Syraia Haukamo from Napier was best senior speaker in English, with another Hawkes Bay girl, Ivana Schinkel, taking the best junior English prize, and Kaharau Keogh from Waikato taking home the junior Maori tophy.


Waitakere City will be honour its Maori icons at a special function in the Civic Chambers tomorrow night.

Mayor Bob Harvey says with the super city merger now only weeks away, the council felt it should acknowledge those who have contributed to the unique culture of west Auckland.

“It's going to be something special for all Maori out here in Waitakere and indeed in the west. We’re going to honour the greats I guess and those that have given so much of their time and lives to the people out here and we won’t be closing the door until we say a huge thank you. That’s what tomorrow's about,” Mr Harvey says.

The council's taumatua kaumatua met for the last time this week after 18 years offering advice and criticism.


Delegates to this week's 15th annual Cutting Edge conference in Auckland for people working in addiction treatment have been told of the benefits of reconnecting clients to their taha Maori.

Kimiora Tanirau from Waitemata DHB's Whitiki Maurea Maori Mental Health and Addiction Services says more than one in 10 Maori don't know which iwi they are from, and many mainstream providers don't pick that there is a link between that cultural disconnect and a person's mental health and addiction issues.

She calls them Iwi Ngaro ki Te Ao Pakeha ... Lost people in a Pakeha world.

“We want to challenge mainstream organisations and say to them give our Maori back to us because we will work with them in a way you can’t and that is by using kaumatua who can use whakapapa,” Ms Tanirau says.


Organisers of a function at Te Poho O Rawiri marae to celebrate a hundred years of Maori rugby in Poverty Bay have been inundated with requests for tickets.

Albie Gibson from Turanga Nui A Kiwa Maori Rugby says while there have been plenty of players with roots in the region who made the Maori squad while playing for other unions, tomorrow night's focus is on those who made national honours while playing for Poverty Bay.

It's been a challenge tracking them down, so only 15 of the 34 eligible players and their whanau have been found so far.


Waitangi Day protests have been turned into artworks in a show opening at New Plymouth's Govett-Brewster Art Gallery tomorrow.

The gallery is featuring a survey show of large multi-screen video installations by Alex Monteith featuring subjects such as air force alpine helicopter training, motorbike riding, surfing and protests.

The Northern Ireland-born artist says when she returned to Aotearoa after a multi-year project making an experimental documentary about the Troubles, she felt driven to learn more about this country's history.

When friends suggest a slow convoy to protest Transit's refusal to fly a Maori flag from the Auckland Harbour Bridge, her art-making instincts kicked in.

“We got in behind that project and hired a red landrover and a flag and had it loaded up with bullet cams and recorded the whole journey of that very slow moving protest activity with a frontward bullet cam recording and a rearward bullet cam recording that go in the art gallery,” Ms Monteith says.

Accelerated Geographies also includes her Waitangi Day 2009 work, Parihaka to Cape Egmont Rd to Parihaka with two Tino Rangatiratanga Flags and two Land Rovers.

Bridge generation passing

Former Maori Affairs Minister Parekura Horomia says the deaths of three great rangatira is a reminder to those remaining that a significant generational shift in leadership is happening.

Mr Horomia says Sir Archie Taiaroa from Te Atihaunui a Paparangi, Jim Nicholls from Hauraki and Darcy Ria from Rongowhakaata can be seen as a members of a bridge generation.

“You know they're that bridged the real old people and moving into the new. Too many tangi, getting hoha with them. But it is a thing where we really sharpen our focus, get more strategically attuned, and make sure that we cater for the new and make sure it’s imbued with the tikanga or the passion that people like Archie always maintained,” Mr Horomia says.

Sir Archie Taiaroa's funeral is at 10 tomorrow at Taumarunui.


Students from Te Hapua School are being given counseling for the shock and grief they felt from being among the first on the scene of a massive pilot whale stranding at Spirits Bay.

Teacher Te Aroha Wihapi says the nine 13 and 14 years olds were keen to help when they heard there had been a stranding on Wednesday, but they didn't expected to see the pod of 72 whales lining the beach for a couple of kilometers.

She says the community is proud of the way the rangatahi pitched in and helped.

“It's a real despair to see what has gone on and from a Maori perspective iut will be something we would like to look at, that once our whales has passed there was a wairua feeling to do karakia about it,” Mrs Wihapi says.

Several students returned yesteday with their whanau to continue helping in the rescue, which is being co-ordinated by DOC.


The designer of an on-line training programme to encourage young people to become alcohol and drug addiction workers is thrilled at its success.

Rawiri McKinney says most addiction clinicians are in the older age group, so he designed the Mana Arahi programme for university entrance level.

He says it's getting a positive response from everyone in the sector.

“We’ve already got a huge response from students wanting enroll this year, probably 100 actually, and this is great, because obviously young people engage better with young people. We’ve got the issue with young people using drugs and who better to engage with them than people of a similar age,” Mr McKinney says.

Students who do Mana Arahi can go on to get university scholarships from the Matuaraki national addiction workforce development programme.


The Manu Korero competitions are over for another year, with the best young Maori orators in Maori and English found from around the motu.

Organising committee member Komene Cassidy says it was a huge fillip for Maori students in Dunedin to be able to host the event.

The junior English trophy went to Ivana Schinkel from Hawkes Bay, while Kaharau Keogh from Nga taiatea Kuru in Waikato was the standout performer in the Rawhiti Ihaka junior Maori section.

He says Syraia Haukamo from Napier took some risks to win the senior English trophy with a speech on forgiveness constructed as a story, rather than the traditional speech form.

The senior Maori Pei Te Hurinui Jones trophy was won by Herea Winitana from Tuwharetoa who won the best prepared speech and best male speaker categories, with Puhiauarangi Black from Ngai Tuhoe taking second through her wins as best impromptuu speech and best female speaker.


Te Rarawa chair Haami Piripi says Maori will be able to work positively with the Land and Water Forum's report on the future of New Zealand's freshwater resources.

The forum, which includes 58 business, industry, conservation and iwi groups, is recommending a national commission to manage water jointly with iwi.

Mr Piripi says iwi have come to the conclusion they need to work within the system, rather than take an us and them approach to water.

“Our perspective as iwi hasn’t been that we own all the water and therefore we are claiming it. Our perspective is that water is an extremely important resource to both Maori and Pakeha New Zealanders and so Maori need to be built into the management of water and the allocation of it,” Mr Piripi says.


Former Kiwi league standoff turned team manager Tony Kemp says Benji Marshall from Ngai Tuhoe holds the key to West Tigers' NRL hopes.

The inspirational Kiwi captain has hit a purple patch, playing one of his best ever games last week against Canberra to advance his team to a semi final showdown with St George Illawarra in Sydney tomorrow.

Mr Kemp says with his elusive footwork and unpredictable style, the 25-year-old who has played 12 tests and 130 NRL games, will be a handful for Wayne Bennett's Minor Premier winners.

“He's playing some wonderful football. He had a hand in all the tries that were scored on the weekend and the Tigers all year have been the team that dug in and ground out wins and if it’s anything like last week Benji will go a long way to making sure they are in another final yet again,” he says.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Packed funeral for Jim Nicholls

St Georges Anglican Church in Thames was packed today for the funeral of Hauraki elder and New Zealand Maori Council deputy chair Jim Nicholls, who died on Sunday at the age of 70.

Dale Husband from Ngati Maru and Radio Waatea says Jim Nicholls is a man who touched many, both Maori and Pakeha, certainly in the Hauraki region where he is from.

The service in the Anglican Church in Thames were filled to overflowing, and the tributes paid to him were about the generosity of his contribution to Maori affairs, bth in the Hauraki rohe and also in the wider Maori community.

The pallbearers reflected his time at St Stephen’s Maori Boys College. Hone Kaa officiated the services, Hone Harawira was there, Te Ururoa Flavell, both ex-students, Waihoroi Shortland, Toby Curtis, and all spoke of a man who after being very successful in his own right in business, devoted the latter stages of his life to Hauraki tribal life and the wider Maori community.

A teacher by profession, a man who was very much respected by both the Maori and Pakeha communities, he was laid to rest the Whai Apu urupa just opposite the famed Totara Pa, the home of the Hauraki people.


Former governor - general Sir Paul Reeves says the late Sir Archie Taiaroa epitomised the spirit that needs to go into the upcoming constitutional review.

Sir Archie Taiaroa died on Tuesday aged 73, and his tangi is drawing hundreds of people to Taumarunui.

Sir Paul says Sir Archie, Sir Mason Durie and himself were trustees of a fund set to promote constitutional change.

“A person like Archie seemed to me to be someone who expressed the very heart of what it means to be a Maori and yet people at large saw him as one who was a great New Zealander. That’s what the constitutional review should produce, that sense of what it means to be a New Zealander, both Maori and Pakeha,” Sir Paul says.


Te Hotu Manawa Maori is using online learning to produce more Maori smoking cessation advisors.

Moana Tane, the Maori heart lobby's chief executive, says participants can pick up enough in an hour's training to help people through nicotine replacement therapy.

She says it was an effective use of the organisation's scarce resources.

“Many of our workers around the country live in very isolated areas and it’s hard to get to training, especially to kaupapa Maori training which is what we deliver so our intention in going into an e-environment was to open up access for smokers, for people who are working with Maori communities to help people quit smoking, but also for anyone who has an interest in helping our people get off tobacco,” Ms Tane says.

She spoke on the programme to this week's Public Health Association conference at Turangawaewae marae.


A class of nine students from Te Hapua school found themselves in the middle of the huge whale stranding at Spirits Bay.

Teacher Te Aroha Wihapi says the 13 and 14 year olds were expecting to find a few pilot whales, but as they came over the crest of the hill at Kapowairua there were stranded whales as far as the eye could see.

She says the first reaction of many was shock and sadness.

“Straight away a couple of my other students just went into action mode and went out to help a baby whale head back out to sea, and I had a few of them just touching and patting and hugging the whales. Just seeing the state they were in, they were very upset and very taken by it,” Mrs Wihapi says.

She is extremely proud of the way her students coped.


The general manager of the second largest Maori dairy farmer says Fonterra's projected $7 a kilo payout will help it recover from previous adversities.

Paraninihi ki Waitotara Incorporation runs 7000 cows on 13 dairy units, producing about 2.3 million kilos of milk solids a year.

Dion Tuuta says production was down last year because of low forecast meant budgets were cut, but things are looking positive, climate willing.

“Our year this year started very well. We’re ahead of our production budgets. But of course we’ve just been hit by some massive rain here in Taranaki as well, the whole country has, yet to see what effect that will have on our production but we’re looking forward to a positive year. As long as Fonterra can keep it up, it’s good news,” Mr Tuuta says.

Paraninihi ki Waitotara Incorporation only farms 10 percent of its land because of the historic reserve land system, and the high payouts mean its lessees will be unlikely to put their farms up for sale at affordable prices any time soon.


The chair of far north iwi Te Rarawa says it's time for the Department of Conservation to help rather than hinder treaty settlements.

An independent report of the department's performance says it's focus on risks and problems means it's getting in the way of the government's target to complete historical settlements by 2014.

Haami Piripi says while staff in the far north conservancy work well with Muriwhenua iwi, those in head office have been unhelpful and often obstructive.
He says conservation groups who promote a split between iwi and kiwi seem to have undue influence on the department's attitude.

“A lot of conservation groups see land coming back to Maori as being a form of privatisation but nothing could be further from the truth. As history reveals, we are Maori people and Maori communities, we have probably given the most resources to the common good, the public interest,” Mr Piripi says.

Treaty focus likely in constitutional review

Former governor - general Sir Paul Reeves says the upcoming constitutional review will be a chance to clarify what the Treaty of Waitangi means for New Zealanders.

The Prime Minister has confirmed the review promised in the Government's support agreement with the Maori Party will start soon.

Sir Paul says he doesn't fear it will be at the expense of the Treaty.

“The treaty is very strong. The treaty is pushing us around. We must now give legs, shape and direction to all the treaty talk that we take part in and if the Prime Minister is willing to allow that discussion and negotiation to proceed, then off we go,” he says.

Sir Paul, who led a group which developed a constitution for Fiji, says there are many people in New Zealand capable of sitting on the review team.


The Maori language commission is concerned at the dwindling numbers of Maori language experts able to teach others to teach Maori.

Glenis Philip-Barbara, the chief executive of Te Taura Whiri i Te Reo Maori, says the shortages affecting paepae around the country is mirrored in the education sector.

She says many Maori in their 40s and 50s want to improve their grasp of te reo Maori, but can't find people to teach or mentor them.

“We need people who are matatau to be in a position to teach and mentor and support. We are struggling to grow people to that high fluency who are then able to turn around and contribute to language learning and language growth on the ground,” Ms Philip Barbara says.


The chair of New Zealand Women's Rugby League says the Black Ferns win in the women's rugby world cup win has drawn attention to next month's two-test series between the Kiwi Ferns and England.

Christine Panapa says like the Black Ferns, the Kiwi women's squad has always had a strong Maori and Polynesian component.

The Kiwi Ferns play England in Whangarei on October 10th and at Waitakere Stadium in West Auckland on the 15th.


The chair of far north iwi Te Rarawa says a report which slammed the Conservation Department's responsiveness on treaty issues was on the mark.

The independent review prepared for the State Services Commission said while there are strong relaitonships with Maori at conservancy level, DoC's head office focuses on risks and problems rather than looking for creative ways to contribute to treaty settlements.

Haami Piripi says conservation land accounts for the bulk of Crown assets in the far north, and it will be an essential part of the eventual Muriwhenua settlement.

“DoC staff on the ground recognize that we have this special relationship with the environment, that there is some cultural capital contained in that, and that it is valuable to them progressing the conservation ethic whereas the head office boffins are moribund with political position taking,” Mr Piripi says.

He says only now after almost a decade of negotiations are senior DoC staff starting to contribute to discussions with Te Rarawa.


The Prime Minister John Key says the Maori Party has got the main things it asked for in the Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Bill.

Maori Party co-leader Pita Sharples has voiced his dissatisfaction in the final shape of the bill, and had indicated it will be revisited in future.

But Mr Key says it's an improvement on the 2004 Foreshore and Seabed Act.

“There are a couple of fundamental issues which genuinely offended Maori and they were inability to test their rights in the court, therefore the access to justice that any other New Zealander enjoyed, and secondly the essential confiscation of the foreshore and seabed into sole crown ownership. Now those two issues have been resolved,” Mr Key says.


Health workers have been told that in some parts of the Bay of Plenty, one in 39 Maori children have had rheumatic fever.

Paediatrican John Malcolm told the Public Health Association conference at Turangawaewae Marae yesterday the chance of Pakeha children getting the fever is less than one in 10,000.

He says it has long term consequences for Maori mortality.

“Twice as many people die of rheumatic heart disease in New Zealand as do of cervical cancer. These are people often dying in their 20s, 30s, 40s and 50s so while the initial attacks we keen an eye on between 5 and 15 years of age, the heart damage and the failing heart, stokes, heart and valve infection can go on for years,” Dr Malcolm says.

The best defence is swabbing sore throats to detect the bugs which cause rheumatic fever, but many doctors don't swab automatically because of poor historic advice from the Ministry of health or because they come from countries where it is not a problem.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Tears on road home for Sir Archie Taiaroa

Tainui and Tuwharetoa were given a chance today to pay tribute to Sir Archie Taiaroa.

The body of the Whanganui Maori leader spent time at Turangawaewae Marae in Ngaruawahia and Pukawa on the shores of Lake Taupo, on the way back to his home marae in Taumarunui.

Tuwharetoa spokesperson Napa Otimi says the Sir Archie had been a valued member and friend of the central North Island iwi, including heading a Department of Maori Affairs regional office in Turangai during the 1980s.

“Archie was our glue. He was the glue not just for Tuwharetoa. In the time of Sir Hepi, he brought about the coming together, particularly for Ngati Tuwharetoa. He worked tirelessly for our people, the development of our land blocks as well as his support through his whakapapa to Pukawa to a lot of our marae,” Mr Otimi says.

The funeral for Sir Archie Taiaroa is at 10 on Saturday morning in Taumarunui.


The Prime Minister, John Key, says a constitutional review panel will be appointed soon.

The review is part of the Maori Party's confidence and supply agreement with National.

Mr Key says it was important to get the process right.

“I mean I think everyone was of the view there was no real rush. We need to do that appropriately and also people need to have input, because while we don’t have a written constitution per se, I think the public own the constitution so we need to make sure there is a lot of input,” Mr Key says.

The review panel will be able to address questions such as the implications of becoming a republic.


The chief executive of the Maori language commission says the quality of entries for this year's Te Wiki O Te Reo Maori Awards shows how government agencies, schools and even businesses are embracing the kaupapa.

The awards for Maori Language week initiatives will be presented at the Huia Te Reo national Maori language conference in Rotorua next month.
Glenis Philip-Barbara says the independent judges have some tough calls to make in the 13 categories.

“I have to say Inland Revenue were hugely impressive this year in terms of the range and scope of things they got involved in, for Te Wiki o Te Reo Maori, Christchurch Polytechnic, Tokoroa High School, Petone Central School, Massey University, so just the huge range and variety of people who really took the kaupapa to heart I mean it was kai, an easy kaupapa to love, and they just ran with it and did the most fantastic things,” Ms Philip-Barbara says.


The chair of Hawkes Bay iwi Ngati Kahungunu, Ngahiwi Tomoana, says there are major difference among Maori on water policy.

The Land and Water Forum, which includes a wide range of stakeholders including iwi, today released its report on freshwater management, including a recommendation that a National Land and Water Commission be established on a co-governance basis with iwi.

The report said it didn't consider the issue of iwi rights and interests in water, because that is subject to separate discussions betwen iwi and the Crown.

Mr Tomoana says a hui earlier this month of the Iwi Leaders Group was unable to achieve consensus on the issue.

“The iwi views ranged from one extreme to the other, one for privatization, others for customary ake tonu atu. It’s about trying to get that iwi view, the one that’s more prevalent,” he says.


Labour Party leader Phil Goff says the Maori Party needs to start listening to Maori voters and put a future coalition with Labour back on the table.

He says the melt down of ACT and improving polling among other opposition parties means the next government could well be a coalition of Labour, the Greens and New Zealand First.

He says the Maori Party needs to face up to the fact National hasn't delivered for Maori.

“They would have to be thinking seriously about that because it is Maori people who are being shafted by this National government, they are the ones bearing the brunt of the unemployment, so many Maori workers are being done over by the 90 day rule where you can be sacked with no reason given, it’s Maori household who are finding they are not getting the increases, either from wages or from tax cuts,” Mr Goff says.

The majority of Maori voters gave their party vote to Labour last election.


Film maker Sumner Burstyn says her documentary on a Maori family growing up in rural New Zealand is succeeding because it encourages audiences to examine their own lives.

This Way of Life won the best director and best arts feature documentary sections at last weekend's Qantas Film and television Awards.

Ms Burstyn says the accolades should go to Peter and Colleen Karena, who raised their six children against the backdrop of the isolated Ruahine ranges and Waimarama Beach in the Hawkes Bay.

“What we wanted to do was get so close into their life that as audience, we see their life the way they see their life and rather than that causing a judgmental response, it causes each of us to think about how we are living. The most common response I have is people come away and say ‘Why am I living the way I am living and what can I do differently,’” Ms Burstyn says.

As well as screening for 16 weeks in Aotearoa, This Way of Life was run in theatres in Los Angeles and New York with the aim of qualifying for the Academy Awards.

Sir Archie Taiaroa dies suddenly

Maoridom is rocked by the loss of Sir Archie Te Atawhai Taiaroa from Te Atihau a Paparangi, Tuwharetoa, Maniapoto and te Arawa, who died yesterday evening of a stroke at the age of 73.

Labour MP Shane Jones says he owes a personal debt to Sir Atawhai, who nominated him to chair the Treaty of Waitangi Fisheries Commission.

He says like New Zealand Maori Council deputy chair Jim Nichols, who also died this week, Sir Atawhai was a leader in the classic mold.

“Someone of the ilk of Sir Bob Mahuta, Honorouble Matiu Rata, passes from our midst, so a deep level of sadness and some uncertainty really whether or not the generation between basically 50 to 60, will our skills, our experience and confidence be up to the task of carrying on the work which the likes of Jim and Archie did not only in their own iwi but for Maoridom on a national stage,” Mr Jones says.

Sir Atawhai Taiaroa will be taken back to Taumarunui, but other iwi he whakapapas to are asking he spend time with them on the way.


A member of the Minister of Maori Affairs' Maori economic taskforce says a plan to boost seafood exports could bring benefits for other sectors of the Maori economy.

Ngahiwi Tomoana from Ngati Kahungunu says iwi fishing companies are looking at marketing their crayfish directly into China, bypassing the middlemen in Hong Kong.

He says the Koura Inc strategy could be used for other products.

“If we can show our people that we can get two, five, even 10 percent value by going as one, that model can be transplanted to a whole lot of other products including fruit, including wood, including meat, including fashion, including tourism, including the lot,” Mr Tomoana says.

What he learned by accompanying the minister, Pita Sharples, to China this month was that relationships and whanaungatanga are critical to doing business in Asia.


Te Waka Kai Ora will today launch the world's first tikanga based organic certification system.

Percy Tipene, the chair of the national Maori organics authority, says products which pass muster can carry a new new produce label - Hua Parakore, showing it is kai atua or food fit for the gods.

He says Maori organic farming requires a fundamental change of approach.

“A lot of our whenua and the landscape we have today is the result of western science. What Maori are talking about is redesigning it to create the safe environment we want to create so we can produce a product of integrity, a product that’s been grown, fostered, nurtured in the hands of Maori tikanga,” Mr Tipene says.

Te Waka Kai Ora has just completed a two-week hikoi around the country promoting organic farming among Maori landowners.


Atihau-a-Paparangi, Tuwharetoa, Maniapoto and the motu are mourning Sir Archie Te Atawhai Taiaroa, who died in Waikato Hospital last night of a stroke at the age of 73.

Sir Atawhai was made a Distinguished Companion of The New Zealand Order of Merit in 2003 for his contributions to Maori, and he was reclassified a Knight Companion of the Order in 2009.

Sir Atawhai chaired the Whanganui River Maori Trust Board and was a member of Te Ohu Kaimoana, after stepping down as chair last year.

Peter Douglas, the chief executive of the Maori fisheries settlement trust, says the former Maori affairs official and former deputy mayor of Taumarunui was chosen for the trust in 1992 because of his skills as a peacemaker.

“If you look at the things that people remember about him, they remember him as someone who listened, someone who understood, someone who went to the trouble of trying to understand how people felt in making sure that message was properly understood by other people, those sort of people who make decisions, so people like that are rare and that’s why he’s regarded as highly as he is,” Mr Douglas says.

Kua riro ra taku kura tongarewa. E te rau titapu, moe mai ra.


The Maori Party co-leader, Pita Sharples, says the constitutional review promised as part of the support agreement with National should start soon.

He says while the Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Bill isn't everything the party hoped for when it demanded the repeal of the Foreshore and Seabed Act, the review will give Maori another opportunity to fight for their rights.

“You know we're waiting for the day we have our Maori parliament up and running, who knows, or something similar. However the review of the constitution which we’ve initiated should reveal some opportunities for us to create new pathways and I hope Maori will engage in that,” Dr Sharples says,

The government is currently picking the team to conduct the constitutional review.


The return to Aoteraroa of an indigenous carver from British Columbia means a totem pole standing outside Te Pataka Museum in Porirua will be blessed today by kaumatua from Ngati Toa Rangatira.

Tamahou Temara from Toi Maori says Dempsey Bob and his son David Bob carved it from New Zealand-grown redwood at last year's Maori Art Market at the Te Rauparaha Arena.
He says Dempsey Bob’s return means Te Pataka director Darcy Nicholas asked for the blessing to be done.

Tamahou Temara says the exchanges between the Canadian First Nations carves and Maori tohunga whakairo have been valuable for both groups.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Strategy for China trade starts small

The chair of Te Ohu Kaimoana says Maori need to stick together and take small steps to develop their trade with China.

Ngahiwi Tomoana was part of a Maori business delegation which accompanied Maori Affairs Minister Pita Sharples to Shanghai and Beijing this month.

He says the delegation's official status meant it met some of the most powerful people in the country and some of the poorest ... and there was lessons to be learned from both.

“A lot of people go up to China, they get seduces by the glitz and the hiss and the road of Shanghai and Beijing and Guanzhou and Hong Kong but I think the Maori pathway is in through whanaungatanga, especially through the ethnic people,” Mr Tomoana says.

He says the world marketplace is too big for individual tribal brands, and a Maori brand needs to be put out there.


Central North Island Maori farmers are looking to microbes to allow them to expand dairy faming without polluting waterways.

Gifford McFadden from Rotorua Land and Lakes Trust, a joint venture between Rotorua/Taupo Federated Farmers and Te Arawa Federation of Maori Authorities, says the trust is working with Scion forest research institute to determine whether specific microbes can speed up nutrient recycling.

The Reperoa dairy farmer says the regional council's answer to effluent run-off into the region's lakes and rivers is to replace cows with trees, but that will penalise many Maori landowners.

“Something like 75 percent of land in the catchment is Maori owned and the y want to develop it. Federated Farmers is sympathetic to that because we don’t see any difference between our land and their land and how it is going to be treated and we don’t see that locking land up or putting it in pine trees is a reasonable thing to do as a solution,” Mr McFadden says.

The microbes will be trialed over three years on at least two farms in Edgecumbe and Reporoa.


Taranaki Maori health collective Tui Ora has won a grant from the government's Health Innovation Fund to design services which fit in with Whanau Ora.

Project manager Ali Hamlin says Tui Ora has taken a holistic approach to health care for more than decade, so it has a lot to contribute to the way the new model of model of health delivery develops.

“This particular model of care that we are aiming to achieve provides a good foundation for the implementation of Whanau Ora in its wider capacity,” Ms Hamlin says.

Thirty other Maori health, disability and social service providers also secured grants from the $20 million Health Innovation fund.


The head of the Council of Trade Union's runanga says the public is clearly unhappy with the Government's fire at will policies.

A survey of 750 New Zealanders by UMR Research found four in five opposed employers having the right to dismiss workers with the first 90 days without any right of appeal.

Syd Keepa says the policy hasn't helped Maori get jobs in smaller companies as National claimed it would, and extending it to all companies will make things worse.

“The people it will affect the most are those people out in the margins and obviously in the low paid, low skilled areas and it will have a huge effect on both Maori and Pacific Islanders,” says Mr Keepa, who is from the National Distribution Union


Pharmac says Maori will benefit for its decision to increase the availability of drugs which reduce the risk of strokes and heart attacks.

The health funding agency has removed restrictions on who can get the cholesterol lowering drug Atorvastatin, and from next month it will halve the cost of the cost of another cholesterol inhibitor, Ezetimibe.

Medical director Peter Moodie says the Maori rate of heart attacks and strokes is above average.

“What we know about these drugs is they really do reduce heart attacks and the risk of heart attack so by widening access, making it easier for them to be used and accessed, Maori will greatly benefit,” Dr Moodie says.

Drugs aren't the whole story, and people at risk also need to exercise and watch their diet.


Te Taura Whiri i Te Reo Maori has postponed this year's language symposium because of concerns it could clash with a ministerial review panel's investigation of Maori language strategy.

Glenis Philip-Barbara, the language commission's chief executive, says the symposium is a keenly anticipated feature of the annual Huia Te Reo, which will be held in Rotorua next month.

But she says there will be plenty of other activities at the hui, including the presentation of the Maori Language awards and an expo of products and initiatives which support language learning and use.

“Our people get annoyed if they get two different groups from Poneke going out and asking the same sets of questions around the same kaupapa. So we thought in order to enhance and support the mahi of the panel that we would reformat our hui and refocus instead on simply engaging the Maori language speaker communities,” Ms Phillip Barbara says.

Tobacco win inspires iwi

The chair of Ngati Kahungunu is applauding a Wairoa tobacconist and barber who answered the iwi's wero to stop selling cigarettes.

Ngahiwi Tomoana says Mike Bird's decision to close down part of his business that was turning over $3000 a week will give the iwi confidence in its strategy to demonise tobacco retailers and highlight the social benefits of a smoke free community.

“Well it's bowled us over and we thought if a retailer steeped in tobacco can see the benefit of having Maori clients for 10, 15 years longer, this only augurs well for us addressing the big retailers like Pak ‘n’ Save and New World,” Mr Tomoana says.

The 60,000-member iwi is seeking meetings with big retailers and petrol station owners discuss taking tobacco products from view, even if they won't accept an outright stop to sales.


Buck Shelford is considered a giant among men - and he considers that too big.

The rugby legend is the new face of a Jenny Craig weight loss campaign aimed at men.

He says he stopped his regular exercise programme when he had a bout of cancer three years ago, and it's made him aware of the importance of what he eats.

“It's about the quantity of what we’re eating. We’re eating huge meals and the body doesn’t really need it. If the body doesn’t need it, it’s not going to assimilate it for the energy it needs. All it’s going to do is sit in our gut and all the bad things in that food turns to fat and all we do is get heavier and heavier,” Mr Shelford says.

If he gets his extra 20 kilos off within six months, he may take to the rugby field again.


The secretary of the New Zealand Maori Council, Tata Parata, says its late deputy chair, Jim Nicholls, was committed to giving Maori communities a voice.

Mr Nicholls died at his home in Thames on Sunday aged 70, surrounded by his family.

From Ngati Haua, Ngati Maru and Ngati Hako, the former secondary school teacher and insurance salesman was drawn into the Maori Council in the 1980s, when Hauraki established itself as a separate region apart from the Waikato council.

Mr Parata says in recent years Mr Nicholls was a valued contributor, and in recent years picked up much of the workload from long serving chair Sir Graham Latimer.

“He dedicated himself to ensuring that the council was always used as a sounding board for community needs. He has probably devoted the latter part of his life to ensuring that the Maori Council and the provision of the (Maori Community Development) Act were part of Maori community development,” Mr Parata says.

Jim Ponui Nicholls will be taken this morning to Matai Whetu Marae near Thames. His funeral service is at 11.30 on Thursday morning at St Georges Anglican Church in Thames.


Feilding iwi Ngati Kauwhata will today bury one of its most distinguished sons, Bruce Poananga, with full military honours.

Major Poananga, who also has Ngati Porou, Whanganui and Toa Rangatira whakapapa, died on Friday aged 79.

His daughter, Atareta Poananga, says her father was chosen by Sir Apirana Ngata to be the first Maori cadet to go through Duntroon Military Academy in Australia.

His military career included service with the Maori Battalion in Italy, in J Force, leading the Fijian contingent in the Malaya Emergency and serving with the United Nations in Jerusalem during the Six Day War.

She says he played a significant role in an incident at the end of the Second World War, when the Tito's Yugoslav forces were about to over-run the Italian city of Trieste.

“He was making a move to circle strategic areas and so dad had told me he had issued a command to surround the place with tanks and so then Titi backed off and went back to his own territory,” Ms Poananga says.

Major Bruce Poananga's funeral is at 2 this afternoon at Aorangi Marae in Fielding.

Me noho tonu koe i to ahuru mowai takoto mai ra


There's a reprieve for lessees of Te Arawa Lakes Trust land in Little Waihi near Maketu.

Earlier this year the trust served eviction notices on about 30 water front houses in the Bay of Plenty settlement because of concerns about effluent leeching into the estuary.

“Trust chair Toby Curtis says the notices won't be enforced until all aother options are explored.

“We have to still maintain the license-holders’ agreement as it were, that at same stage they may have to vacate but at this stage no one needs to be evicted from their properties until all properties have been examined on an individual basis,” Mr Curtis says.

A sewage treatment plant which gained resource consent last month may resolve some of the problems.


Qantas award winner Bailey Mackey says it's important Maori production houses make work for mainstream outlets as well as Maori television.

Mr Mackey's Television One show One Land, which out Maori and Pakeha families in living conditions similar to those which existed in the mid 1800s, won the best reality show tohu.

He says it's been a logical progression for him from Radio Ngati Porou and Maori Television.

“I love our reo irirangi, and Maori radio stations, I love Maori TV, but I also think we need to keep telling our stories and offering our perspectives on mainstream as well,” Mr Mackey says.

He says Maori have proven themselves as documentary makers, but reality television with a high reo Maori content appealed to him as a way to appeal to a younger audience.

Hauraki, Maori Council mourn Jim Nichols

Maori council deputy chair Jim Nicholls, who flew the flag for a national Maori interest in the face of iwi sectarianism, has died.

The Ngati Hako kaumatua was the long serving chair of the Hauraki Maori Council.

Toko Renata, the chair of the Hauraki Maori Trust Board, says Mr Nicholls made a valuable contribution across the rohe, particularly in economic development, but he will be remembered most for the work he did on the national stage.

“Treaty of Waitangi was a founding document between two people and Jim was there at the top at Maori Council level actioning all those issues right across the whole spectrum. You name it, he was there,” Mr Renata says.

Jim Nicholls will be taken tomorrow to Matai Whetu marae at Kopu near Thames.

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


The compiler of a bibliography of Maori psychology says there has been a massive growth in research on Maori in the past decade.

Erina Cooper, a lecturer at Auckland University, says when the second edition of the bibliography was published 10 years ago, there were nine Maori psychologists.

There are now 65.

“What we had was a few Maori writing a while ago, and a lot of information about Maori and since the last one we’ve done, what we’ve seen is Maori writing about Maori more and more and I think that’s the real celebration of the bibliography, it’s not just about us, it’s work written by us,” Dr Cooper says.

Topics like depression, smoking cessation and the effects of imprisonment on Maori have provided fertile material for research.


The producer of the quasi-historical reality show One Land says he was surprised to win the top prize for the genre at the weekend's Qantas Film and Television Awards.

The show brought together Maori and Pakeha families in historical costume and put them through the kind of challenges people would have gone through in the mid 1800s.

Bailey Mackey from Eyeworks New Zealand says he doubted it had a chance against high rating shows like The Apprentice and Master Chef New Zealand, especially since it had 25 percent Maori language content.

“I thought we were the third horse in the race to be frank but to get up in a genre that was dominated by big overseas formats was really pleasing,” Mr Mackey says.

He only managed to get the entry form in at the last minute.


A Maori language and tikanga expert says he spoke up for former Hato Paora principal Tihirau Elvis Shepherd out of concern for the wider whanau.

Shepherd was last week sentenced to eight years in jail for historic sex offences against male pupils at his previous workplaces, Hato Petera in Auckland.

Taiarahia Black, a professor of reo and tikanga at Massey University, quoted to the court part of a Ringatu prayer which asks for innocence, forgiveness and enlightenment.

He says it was important the totality of Shepherd's actions and achievements were considered in sentencing.

“When we look at our tipuna whare, what the Crown was going after was what he had done. I was merely reminding the Crown and others there are other parts to this person’s life which he has made a contribution and the testimonials were part of that. The quotes I was giving, the biblical passages, they were passages we were reminded of every time we sit down and have a karakia ourselves,” Professor Black says.

He says his own trust in Shepherd was shattered, but his whanau is left with the consequences.


The author of a book on Maori women and the vote is pleased it has been transformed into an online resource by the Ministry of Women's Affairs.

Tania Rangiheuea says her book was put out by Huia Publishing in 1993 to mark the centenary of women's suffrage, but it's fallen out of print.

She says the role Maori women played in making New Zealand the first country to give women the vote was not widely known.

“It was through associations with Pakeha women that Maori women were able to learn about the franchise campaign and they decided thery would lobby for the same things in the Maori parliament so Maori women actually had a dual franchise campaign going at the same time,” Ms Rangiheuea says.

She'd like to see the suffrage movement made a compulsory part of the history syllabus because it is so fundamental to New Zealand democracy.


Rugby commentator Ken Laban says Ngati Porou outside back Hosea Gear is in the form of his life and must be included on the All Blacks' end of year tour.

The 26 year old was unstoppable in Wellingtons' 17-13 ITM Cup win over Hawkes Bay in the capital on Saturday night.

Mr Laban says it's obvious the All Black selectors are looking for size and speed out wide, but Gear is a match for Ma'a Nonu, Corey Jane, Rene' Ranger and Sonny Bill Williams.

“He's the best player in New Zealand who is not in the All Blacks. Pound for pound, minute by minute, he’s the most intimidating person to defend and his form has been great. If they don’t pick him this on this tour, they are never going to pick him,” Mr Laban says.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Big day for Dame Temuranga Jackson

Aotearoa’s newest dame says she felt overwhelmed by the honour bestowed on her in recognition of decades of community work.

Dame Temuranga Batley-Jackson was invested at the weekend by Governor General Sir Anand Satyanand at the south Auckland urban marae she helped establish, Nga Whare Waatea.

She told those who gathered in support, including Dame Iritana Tawhiwhirangi and many knights both Maori and Pakeha, that her thoughts turned to her late parents in the King County.

“I tell you my father would be saying to our mother, ‘what’s that our daughter’s got?’ and mum would say ‘I don’t know dad, but it must be something to do with the government.’ My family were humble people, they were families, so I tell you as they look down they will be a wee bit puzzled and perplexed at what is happening to their daughter,” she said.

Dame Temuranga, who is better known as June, is the longest-serving member of the Parole Board, the founding chief executive of the Manukau Urban Maori Authority and a former member of the Treaty of Waitangi Fisheries Commission, Te Ohu Kaimoana.


The Water Safety Council is seeking Maori input into new regional strategies to cut drowning deaths.

Its general manager, Matt Claridge, says Maori make up a third of drownings because of factors such as the number of Maori who collect seafood and the fact that too many Maori children aren't taught to swim.

He says those are the kinds of issues being addressed at regional hui, starting in Gisborne last week.

“There was a strong representation from Maori and we can understand what the existing initiatives are, what’s important and we’re going to develop a plan and come back to that region saying this is what we think you need, this is the resource we can help you with and then we’ll know what the gaps are,” Mr Claridge says.

Resources have been developed for kura and schools with high Maori rolls to help teachers teach the children to swim.


Things are looking up for Whanganui's Te Kura Kaupapa Maori o Tupoho, with its $2 million building programme now on track for completion in the new year.

Its tumuaki, Stuart Kawau, says the start of the project to build four new classrooms, a hall and netball court was delayed for more than two years by educational policy reviews and problems securing building consents.

He says the school can now offer a wide range of courses to its 120 students through alliances with other educational institutions such as the three wananga, UCOL and Ag Challenge.

“I suppose it's something we’ve talked about over the yeas, having a seamless education where they don’t have those interruptions where they are going off to intermediate, going off to secondary, so they feel really comfortable staying in the one area for education,” Mr Kawau says.

Te Kura Kaupapa Maori o Tupoho is also considering adding a boarding dormitary.


Actor and director Taika Waititi says it’s great to be recognised at home.

His film Boy collected seven awards at the Qantas Film and Television Awards including the best film, director, screenplay, and supporting actor tohu.

Mr Waititi says it means even more than the awards the film has picked up overseas.

“Well I made the film for New Zealanders first and foremost so to be recognized here in my homeland is a very special thing for me,” he says.

Other Maori winners included Maori Television’s kaumatua interview shoe E Tu Kahikatea, actor George Henare for his performance in Kaitangata Twitch, Entertainment Factual director Melanie Rakena, Simon Reira for his cinematography for The Cult and Tuhoe Isaac for the best performance in a short film.


The country’s newest Maori dame has been hailed as someone who has spoken up for those Maori without a voice.

In bestowing the honour of Dame on Temuranga “June” Batley-Jackson at her Nga Whare Waatea Marae in Mangere at the weekend, Governor General Sir Anand Satyanand cited her more than two decades of service on the Parole Board and in prison rehabilitation, her work in health, welfare, job creation and business development, and her advocacy for urban Maori.

Labour MP Shane Jones, who served with Dame June on Te Ohu Kaimoana during the period it finally resolved the allocation of Maori fisheries settlement assets, says her words carried weight.

“Before us sits a great warrior who spent a great deal of her time challenging the leadership of our tribes and her message will long outlive much of what we did in relation to treaty issues because she speaks for the children and the families that are so often forgotten or overlooked,” Mr Jones says.


A Wairoa tobacconist and hairdresser says he feels good about his decision to stop selling cigarettes, despite it costing his business $3000 a week in turnover.

Mike Bird says the call from Ngati Kahungunu for retailers in its rohe to drop tobacco was what he had been waiting for.

“I felt guilty selling cigarettes, I have done for many years, knowing that it’s no good for anyone, and I’m not a smoker myself and none of my family is smokers, we all like to keep ourselves fit and active, so in the end I decided I’ve had enough, so I just got rid of them,” he says.

Mr Bird, whose wife is Ngati Kahungunu, says he’s renamed the business Hair on Parade.