Today applications open for the Māori digital technology fund, Ka Hao, (formally called the Māori ICT Development Fund). The funding is focused on creating high value employment and business ventures for Māori within the digital (information technology) sector. Use the link below for application information, and note the three current funding priorities are:
- Improving digital skills and pathways for Māori in digital technologies;
- Growing digital technologies businesses; and
- Enhancing new Māori language and culture initiatives through digital technologies.
- The Auckland iwi Te Kawerau a Maki and the Auckland Council seem to be at loggerheads over whether a rāhui to protect kauri trees within the Waitakere Ngāhere should be for the whole forest (iwi viewpoint) or particular areas/tracks (council view). The situation was not helped this week with a council economic agency promoting a Waitangi day walk on a track that was clearly prohibited in order to protect the trees. An apology was issued.
- The Ministry of Primary Industries is consulting on five proposed bylaws to protect freshwater fish species within 13 Rotorua lakes. If enacted the new regulations would protect tuna, īnanga, kākahi, kōaro, kōura and mōrihana, under the Mahire Whakahaere Fisheries Management Plan. Proposed protections include closure of kōaro (meaning no further catches), return of accidentally caught fish of all five specifies, restrictions on harvesting, a ban on scuba gear use, and for Te Arawa to have access to fish species for cultural and customary use. Consultation closes 16 March.
- A grouping of Māori land trusts in the Bay of Plenty are looking to establish a milk processing plant in Kawerau, in partnership with Imanaka (a Japanese company). The plant will be built on land owned by Putauaki Trust, and supplied with geothermal energy from Ngāti Tūwharetoa Geothermal Assets. Imanaka will have a one-third shareholding via a subsidiary, Cedenco.
- Green Party Member of Parliament, Marama Davidson, has confirmed she is seeking election as Party Co-leader.
- Sir Robert Jones has written an opinion piece for the National Business Review mocking Waitangi Day, and Māori. He calls for Māori to provide a day of gratitude to non-Māori, by washing cars and the like, apparently because he considers there are no ‘full-blooded Māori’. The item was deliberately inflammatory, and Sir Robert has received the (presumably) desired reaction of disdain and condemnation. Our only comment regards the National Business Review – why it thought such a column was appropriate for a reputable business magazine is as yet unexplained, although we suspect they will have some explaining to do to the Race Relations Office in the near future, as complaints about the article present.
[Note we will add Sir Robert as a contender for our ūpoko-kumara award, to be announced at Mātāriki. Other contenders we have identified so far include Sir William Gallagher, Professor Paul Moon, and Dr Don Brash, although for clarity eligibility is not restricted to older white males].
 Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED).
 Note eligibility for this award is open to all, not just older white males.