- Mere Mangu has publicly advised that she considers she is now the lawful Chairperson of Te Rūnanga-Ā-Iwi O Ngāpuhi, following the resignation of Mr Sonny Tau. (Ms Mangu had been deputy and considers the rūnanga’s constitution stipulates the Deputy becomes Chair, if the Chair resigns.) She has indicated she expects to be challenged for the role, and that a review of services is now required.
- Arihia Bennett (Ngāi Tahu, Ngāti Porou, Ngāpuhi) has been selected as the Te Puni Kōkiri appointed representative on the New Zealand-China Council. Ms Bennett replaces Ngahiwi Tomoana.
- This week the Minister of Research, Science and Innovation, Megan Woods, announced the development of a multilingual language platform which will enable users to engage with technology in the language of their choice. The language platform will be first launched in Te Reo Māori. The project will receive funding of $13 million over 7 years.
- Our Marine Environment 2019
“The Māori relationship with te moana is based on whakapapa and a long history of people who were astronomers, scientists, ocean navigators, fishers, and regulators. Before colonisation, the Māori economy was based on fishing and a comprehensive trading system. Advanced fishing methods were used – some nets used at Maketu in the Bay of Plenty were up to 1,900 metres long. In addition, the people of Muriwhenua in the Far North identified and named hundreds of fishing grounds within 25 miles offshore, including seasonal descriptions and the species present (Waitangi Tribunal, 1988). As Treaty partners, Māori have a role as kaitiaki of te moana and mātaitai (fish or food obtained from the sea). Kaitiaki are guardians who carry out the act of tiaki and look after, protect, and conserve the resource or taonga; kaitiaki can be a human, animal, or a spiritual being. This role and the close relationships that Māori have with the moana are acknowledged by the Crown and reflected in Treaty settlements and post-settlement agreements.” (Page 9)
Last week the Ministry for the Environment and Statistics New Zealand released a report on the status of the marine environment. It identifies four issues of concern: (i) our native marine species and habitats are under threat; (ii) our activities on land are polluting our marine environment; (iii) our activities at sea are affecting the marine environment; and (iv) climate change is affecting marine ecosystems, taonga species and us. This report is not specifically Māori-focused but will be of interest to Māori working in this area, with clear scientific data presented, and an exemplar around kuku. It is a sobering report. The report also acknowledges Māori views of the marine environment; as shown in the following text.