Waatea News Update

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Peters finds common cause with Harawira

New Zealand First leader Winston Peters says Hone Harawira is right to question the value of the Maori Party's close association with National.

The Tai Tokerau MP is set to appear before a Maori Party disciplinary committee today to answer charges that his newspaper column about the relationship had undermined the party and his fellow MPs.

Mr Peters says his fellow Ngapuhi has woken up to how little Maori had got in exchange for his party's support for a John Key government

“The UN declaration has not helped one Maori in this country. The home insulation programme has been trialed in two places, Ngapuhi and Ngati Porou, which happen to be the two warmest places where Maori live. Whanau Ora is $20m over four years ... this is really a failed programme when you look at the financials of it and I don’t think the majority of Maori people are going to be fooled by this,” he says.

Mr Peters says Hone Harawira shouldn't sit by the phone waiting for a call to join New Zealand First.


The head of the Quit Group says Ngati Kahungunu is showing the way by making its Waitangi Day celebrations tobacco free.

Paula Snowden from Te Rarawa says 46 percent of Maori adults smoke compared with 21 percent of non-Maori.

She says it's important iwi make a stand, such as the way the Hawkes Bay iwi is discouraging its pakeke from lighting up in front of tamariki.


The national librarian says the library is assessing Maori material held by the Alexander Turnbull Library so it can decide what should be made available in digital formats.

Sue Sutherland says the library holds material that not only researchers and scholars but whanau are keen to access.

She says the refurbishment of the library building is has created the opportunity to take a strategic look at the collections, and a young Maori person has been taken on to look through the collections and assess what would be of benefit to researchers, both Maori and Pakeha, if it were in digital format.

Dr Sutherland says the digital archives should be ready about the same time the National Library returns to its refurbished building in the middle of 2012.


An expert on child health says the state of child poverty should be a major election issue.

A report by the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child has called for urgent measures to address the unequal access to health and education of Maori and pacific Island children.

Paediatrician Innes Asher from the Auckland Medical School says the report contains similar findings to an international study on child health she is leading.
She says it's unacceptable 150,000 New Zealand children live in poverty.

“There has been almost nothing done to rectify this huge gap between the two New Zealands, the New Zealand of the well off and New Zealand kids who are in the 10 to 30 percent most disadvantaged that are getting a really rough start to life,” Professor Asher says.

New Zealand's future depends on every child getting good quality of life.


Auckland city's Maori statutory board wants to expand.

The board, which includes seven appointed representatives of mana whenua tribes and two representing all other Maori who live in Tamaki Makaurau, has appointed members to 11 of the council's 18 committees.

Chair David Taipari from Ngati Maru says the board is also considering appointing other Maori onto the committees, if they have the skills the council needs.

“I still believe the board is short. There are 14 plus mana whenua groupings yet there are only seats for seven. My preference is to seek better representation on that board,” he says.

Mr Taipari says the independent Maori statutory board is giving Maori better representation on the council than they would have got if the government had accepted the Royal commission recommendation for two elected Maori councilors and one mana whenua representatives.


Three British tourists whose belongings were stolen while they visited Whangarei Falls last week say they were over-whelmed by the response from Northland's Maori community.

Labour MP Kelvin Davis conducted a whip around of Maori tourism operators in the region to get money for the trio to travel to Wellington to replace their passports at the British high Commission.

Keith Jones says the help didn't stop there and he appreciates everything done.

New Zealand hospitality has been second to none, so he won't be cutting short his holiday because of the theft.


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