Salient Māori News Items for the Week to 23 February 2018
- New Zealander of the Year Awards were held last night; two Māori were honoured:
- Kim Workman (Ngāti Kahungunu ki Wairarapa, Rangitāne), Senior New Zealander of the Year, for public advocacy, policy and research focused on justice sector reforms [E te karanga pāpā, ka nui te mihi ki a koe nā tō whanau]; and
- Ricky Houghton (Te Paatu, Ngāti Kahu, Ngāti Whātua) New Zealand Local Hero of the Year for housing relief and support initiatives for communities in the Far North.
- Whetu Fala and Te Rau Kupenga have been appointed to the Ngā Taonga Sound and Vision Board.
- Ōnuku Māori Lands Trust (Rotorua) and the Māwhera Incorporation have been announced as the finalists for this year’s Ahuwhenua Trophy (which has a dairy sector focus).
- Māori Party members elected Che Wilson as the party’s new president; and Te Ururoa Flavell and Kapua Smith were elected co-vice presidents. No new party leader has been named as yet.
- Bill English has resigned as the leader of the National Party, sparking a leadership race. In addition, the National Party has decided to vote on the position of Deputy Leader (currently held by Hon Paula Bennett). Simon Bridges (Ngāti Maniapoto) has announced his candidacy for the position of leader, along with four other contenders. He joins other Mārama Davidson of the Green Party as another Māori MP with leadership aspirations.
- Applications for the Ministry of Health Hauora Māori Scholarships 2018 are now open. This year 520 scholarships across 11 categories will be awarded. Scholarship applications close 28 March 2018. https://www.health.govt.nz/our-work/populations/maori-health/hauora-maori-scholarships-2018/scholarship-categories
- Statistics New Zealand has released a survey on cultural participation, with interesting results, such as data showing wide spread use of Māori words and phrases by both Māori and non-Māori. (71% of Māori reportedly use Te Reo words every week.) We will provide a fuller brief on this item next week. https://www.stats.govt.nz/reports/kiwis-participation-in-cultural-and-recreational-activities
- A petition by Renae Maihi asking the Prime Minister to strip Sir Robert Jones of his Knighthood on the basis of inflammatory comments made about Māori earlier this month has now reached 58,000 people in support. (Pānui 3/2018 provides details on this matter.) The petition can be seen here: https://www.change.org/p/rt-hon-jacinda-ardern-strip-racist-sir-bob-jones-of-his-knighthood-read-his-vile-rant-here
- Ngāti Kahungunu Iwi Incorporated have launched a low priced funeral package for Iwi members through an agreement with Simplicity Bereavement Services, Hastings. The package is designed to reduce the financial burden of funerals for registered iwi members.
 Underlining added.