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Te Reo

E29 Salient Māori News week ending 23 August 2019

  • This week Shaun Keenan – former CEO of Ngāti Te Whiti Whenua Topu Trust was sentenced to three years and 8 months imprisonment in the New Plymouth District Court for 46 charges related to the theft of circa $480,000 from the Trust. This theft has impeded a marae-hub development project the Trust had received funds for.
  • Paraone Gloyne (Ngāti Raukawa) has been appointed to the Te Māngai Pāho Board.
  • Nominations are being called for Te Taumata Aronui – a working group which will be set up to provide Māori community and employer perspectives regarding  the tertiary education sector,  including the reform of vocational Nominations are to be emailed to: Tertiary.Strategy@education.govt.nz  by 6 September 2019.
  • On Wednesday Kiingi Tūheitia delivered his annual coronation speech (it is his 13th anniversary in the role). Amongst other items he noted that matters at Ihumātoa needed time to resolve, and that the Government should not be blamed for child protection matters.

“My challenge is to the whānau, hapū, iwi to take care of our tamariki and where the need arises to place them in a safe home. We must avoid blaming the government and instead work on a solution. We have a chance to design a solution on our own.” Kiingi Tūheitia 21 August 2019.


Salient Māori News Items for the Week to 1 March 2019

  • Last week the biennial Te Matatini competition was held in Te Whānganui-a-Tara (Wellington). The winners were Ngā Tūmanako.  Te Pikikōtuku o Ngāti Rongomai gained second place, and Te Kapa Haka o Te Whānau a Apanui gained third place.
  • This week Te Puni Kōkiri belatedly released the Cabinet paper associated with the new Government Māori Language Strategy (Pānui 5/2019 refers). In the main the paper confirms Cabinet commitment to the strategy, and we note a couple of points of interest:
    • An implementation plan is being developed: it is linked to a Budget bid this year, with a goal being to get Cabinet support for the operational activities in August. This is good, as the strategy needs resourcing to have any real impact, as per our earlier review comments.
    • The Minister notes there was a campaign against the strategy via the online consultation: ultimately 45% of the 2,000- odd submissions were negative. In our view this reinforces our observation that online consultation alone is an inappropriate means to gather Māori (and other) input – hui should have been held.  We note the same operational error is now occurring for the Māori media review, which has no public hui scheduled. (Pānui 4/2019 refers).
  • On Monday the Wellington District Court imposed fines totalling circa $1.1 million on the Directors of Hawkes Bay Seafoods, the company itself, plus a related company and key staff. The directors were Antonino “Nino” Giovanni D’Esposito, Giancarlo “Joe” Harold D’Esposito and manager Marcus Giuseppe D’Esposito. In addition, the company must pay more than $400,000 for the return of its forfeited vessels.
    By way of background the offending was identified in 2014, and after years of defensive wrangling, the grouping finally pleaded guilty in 2018 to 131 charges for selling unreported catch.   We further advise that the key proprietor of Hawkes Bay Seafoods, Antonio D’Esposito, already had at least 98 fishing convictions – which shows a history of ongoing offending in this sector.  (In 1997, he/his company was also required to pay nearly a million dollars in fines for fishing offences.)
    This present case matters for Māori because Hawkes Bay Seafoods is the inshore fishing quota leasee for Ngāti Kahungunu – i.e. it catches the inshore settlement quota of the iwi (and for some other iwi).   That is, its business is based on a significant Crown / Māori Treaty of Waitangi settlement; and in our view its misuse tarnishes the Treaty settlement process.  Put simply, why should/would the Crown provide ongoing settlement redress via quota if fishing rights allocated to iwi are going to be misused and put fish stocks at risk?
    Further, although the proceedings against this group commenced in 2014,  there were other investigations involving Hawkes Bay Seafoods in 2015 relating to people (staff) involved in a paua and crayfish black market.  However, Ngāti Kahungunu has stoically continued its partnership with this company and never openly condemned Hawkes Bay Seafoods for its illegal fishing practices.  Rather, in 2017 Ngāti Kahungunu extended the partnership with a joint venture in purchasing an off-shore fishing boat in a 50:50 arrangement with Hawkes Bay Seafoods (again to fish the iwi Treaty settlement quota).   In our assessment, despite the seriousness of the fishing offending by Hawkes Bay Seafoods, Ngāti Kahungunu presents as having been undeterred in its business dealings with the company.
    However, following the outcome of this most recent case, Ngāti Kahungunu has now expressed a desire to purchase outright Hawkes Bay Seafoods, and is actively taking steps to achieve that.  That may be a positive outcome for the iwi – and if successful it may mean that Ngāti Kahungunu is fishing its own quota, and then also processing and selling those fish itself (plus employing iwi members along each link in the chain).  However, there is some suggestion in the media that Antonino D’Esposito desires to continue on as a consulting advisor.  If so it is difficult to see the value in that; as given the convictions it is possible further association with him would tarnish the fishing brand (‘Takitimu’) that Ngāti Kahungunu is seeking to establish to recover the situation.
    Note for absolutely clarity there is no suggestion that Ngāti Kahungunu has ever been involved in any type of illegal fishing practices.   The convicted offending discussed herein relates to a company that the iwi has a partnership relationship with.
  • The Government’s Welfare Expert Advisory Group has now reportedly submitted their advice to Government.  We note the terms of reference for this group (set last June) was somewhat vague, with its role being to ‘provide advice to the Government on options that could best give effect to its vision for the future direction of the social welfare system’.  Notwithstanding, the Minister for Social Development, Carmel Sepuloni, has referred to this work as an ‘overhaul of the welfare system’.  Accordingly, we expect the report to have significant implications for Māori, particularly for the 109,000 tangata Māori – and their whānau members – who are reliant on one of the three main benefits.[1]  Minister Sepuloni has indicated the report will be released publicly later this month, or in early April.   We will advise further at that time.
  • Statistics NZ has released its working document on how to measure child poverty; Measuring child poverty: Concepts and definitions’. By way of background, the Government’s Child Poverty Reduction Act was in introduced in 2018 to help reduce child poverty in New Zealand – Pānui 8/2018 outlines this policy shift. The new Act now requires Government to set three-year and ten-year targets on four primary measures, and for the Government Statistician to report annually on ten measures of child poverty.  The working paper sets out the technical approaches to be used.  In addition, three further supporting papers explaining the rationales for statistical and data choices have been released.  We have undertaken a summary review of these papers and found nothing untoward: i.e. the measures being used are appropriate, and present as thoughtfully designed.  Māori child poverty information is expected to be presented through this work as well – which in part is a result of submissions made by Māori for this to be included.  We will advise further once the first data sets are released.  The working documentation is available here:  https://www.stats.govt.nz/methods/measuring-child-poverty-concepts-and-definitions
  • The Labour Party has declined an application from John Tamihere to re-join the party. Mr Tamihere is a former Cabinet Minister, and amongst other portfolios was an Associate Minister of Māori Affairs (2002-2004).  Mr Tamihere advises the Party’s council gave no reason for the decline, and indicates that the process presents as unfair, because there was no discussion on why he was declined, nor is there any right of appeal.  Mr Tamihere has noted that this action is likely to be because he has announced his intention to seek the role of Auckland Mayor in upcoming elections, although previously the Labour Party endorsed the current Mayor, Phil Goff.   (Mr Goff will announce shortly whether he intends to stand for re-election.)   The Labour Party’s constitution allows the Party to only endorse one candidate for the mayoralty – meaning if Mr Tamihere had been accepted as a member he could have sought that endorsement ahead of Mr Goff.
  • Last Friday the Minister of Agriculture, Damien O´Connor, announced the 2019 Ahuwhenua Trophy finalists for Māori sheep and beef farming. The finalists are: Whangara Farms (Gisborne); Te Awahohonu Forest Trust / Gwavas Station (Hawkes Bay); and Kiriroa Station (Gisborne).  The winner will be announced on 24 May at the 2019 Ahuwhenua Awards ceremony, to be held in Gisborne.
  • Last Friday the Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations, Andrew Little, announced the Crown’s response to the voting results for the Whakatōhea Settlement Process. In our view the response is essentially to proceed slowly with caution, and to check with officials whether any negotiations can carry on safely and or appropriately now; possibly concurrently with a Waitangi Tribunal hearing.
    By way of background, the mandate of Whakatōhea Pre-settlement Claims Trust to settle historic claims was tested via urgent Waitangi Tribunal hearing claims in 2017.  The Tribunal’s primary finding was that the Crown prioritised its objective of concluding Treaty settlements over a process that was fair to Whakatōhea. The Tribunal found the decision to recognise the Pre-settlement Trust mandate was therefore not fair, reasonable, or made in good faith, and breaches the Treaty principle of partnership.
    To resolve this, in October 2018 Whakatōhea iwi members were asked to vote on the following: 1) continuing with the Whakatōhea Pre-Settlement Claim Trust as their treaty settlement entity; 2a) stop current Treaty negotiations in order that a mandate process be re-run from the start?  And 2b) stop current Treaty negotiations in order that the Waitangi Tribunal can carry out an inquiry into the historical grievances of Whakatōhea?
    The results that came out in November 2018 show a small majority (56%) of iwi voted to continue negotiations with the Crown via the existing entity, but conversely a large majority (73%) voted to also stop negotiations until the Waitangi Tribunal can carry out an inquiry.  It is this somewhat contradictory outcome that Minister Little is seeking to address i.e. carrying on working with the current settlement entity, but not getting ahead / or out of step with Tribunal processes that iwi members have stated they desire to occur first.


[1] Namely, jobseeker support (i.e. unemployment), sole parent support, and supported living.

Salient Māori News Items for the Week ending 30 November 2018

  • Ruakere Hond (Taranaki, Te Ātiawa), Prue Kapua (Te Arawa) and Kim Ngarimu (Ngāti Porou) have been appointed as members of the Waitangi Tribunal.
  • Te Paea Paringatai (Waikato and Ngāti Porou) has been appointed a member of the Library and Information Advisory Commission.
  • The Ngā Tohu Reo Māori 2018 (National Māori Language Awards 2018) were held last week. The winners were:
    • Iwi Award – Muriwai Jones;
    • Whānau Award – Oti te Nanekoti by Te Tāhuhu o Te Mātauranga;
    • Rangatahi Award – Māori Television Giphy Channel by Fly;
    • Takitahi Award – Mike Hollings (Ngāti Raukawa and Te Atihaunui-a-Paparangi);
    • Mātauranga Kaupapa Māori Education Award – Taringa Punua Pāoho by Te Wānanga o Aotearoa;
    • Mātauranga Whānui Education Award – Mahuru Māori – Fortnite by Te Wānanga o Aotearoa;
    • Kāwanatanga Award – Te Amorangi ki mua, Te Hāpai Ō ki muri by Rotorua Lakes Council
    • Pakihi Award – Te Mātāpuna by Fonterra;
    • Te Mahi Toi, Te Mahi Whakangahau Award – Oti te Nanekoti by Te Tāhuhu o Te Mātauranga;
    • Ngā Mahi Pāpāho Award – Sky TV, Tiki Towns;
    • Ngā Hapori Māori Award – Dr Te Taku Parai (Ngāti Toa);
    • Aotearoatanga Award – Kōrero Māori by Te Hiku Media;
    • Te Wiki o te Reo Māori Award – Kupu App by Spark & Te Aka Māori Dictionary;
    • Te Tohu Huia te Reo Award – Kupu App by Spark & Te Aka Māori Dictionary;
    • Te Tohu Oranga Angitu Award – Ahorangi Whatarangi Winiata (Ngāti Raukawa);
    • Ngā Tohu Kairangi: Special Commendations:
      • #1miriona – Te Māngai Pāho
      • Hīkoi Reo Māori Whangārei – Te Kura Taitamawāhine o Whangārei
      • Guyon Espiner – Te Reo Irirangi o Aotearoa
      • Fush Uka – Anton Matthew
      • Te Tauihu – Te Kaunihera o Pōneke.
  • On Saturday 1 December Wakatū Incorporation will hold their annual general meeting in Nelson. A highlight for Wakatū Incorporation this year has been the twenty-year anniversary of Tohu Wines. In 1998, Wakatū Incorporation, in partnership with Rarua Atiawa Iwi Trust and Wi Pere Trust, launched Tohu Wines. Tohu Wines is recognised as He mātāmua taketake – the first Māori-owned and operated wine label in the world. In 2010 Wakatū Incorporation became the sole owners of the brand. At the AGM three board appointments will also be decided.
  • This week the former Minister of Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations, Chris Finlayson, announced his pending retirement from politics, in January 2019. Mr Finlayson oversaw the conclusion of approximately sixty Treaty of Waitangi settlements; and is therefore well known throughout iwi groups in New Zealand.  During his tenure the total dollar quantum of settlements rose from a few hundred million to circa two billion in direct redress.  Although his initial goal of settling all historic claims was not achieved while he was Minister (in particular the settlement with Ngā Puhi reads as the one that got away), Mr Finlayson hastened and streamlined the overall settlement process.  In our view he is without doubt a Parliamentary peer in regards to how much time and effort he placed in resolving outstanding Treaty of Waitangi grievances whilst a Minister of the Crown.
  • Parininihi ki Waitōtara Inc, Te Atiawa Iwi Holdings, and Taranaki Iwi Holding have formed Ngāmotu Hotels Limited Partnership for the purpose of taking ownership of the Novotel New Plymouth. The sale date is set for 1 January 2019, and the price is reportedly $23 million.
  • On Tuesday the Parliamentary Committee stage of the Child Poverty Reduction Bill was completed, and the Bill was divided into two Bills: (i) Child Poverty Reduction Bill; (ii) Children’s Amendment Bill.  This policy area is of importance to Māori, as current Ministry of Social Development research indicates circa 90,000 tamariki Māori live in poorer households / poverty.  The new measures and goals within this proposed legislation will include Māori specific poverty reduction objectives, set in consultation with Māori, based on Treaty principles (Pānui 37/2018 and Pānui 2/2018 refer).
  • On Thursday the second reading of the Misuse of Drugs (Medicinal Cannabis) Amendment Bill was completed in Parliament. This Bill proposes amendments to the Misuse of Drugs Act, allowing for the use of cannabis-based products for people with a terminal illness, and to legalize and regulate medical cannabidiol (CBD) products.  A Government Supplementary Order Paper (i.e. a means to improve some parts of this Bill) has also now been put forward for consideration at the Parliamentary Committee Stage.  We advise that the Ministry of Health has commenced issuing licenses to grow specific strains of cannabis plants for medicinal purposes, and that Māori and community-owned Hikurangi Cannabis Ltd has been awarded a licence to do so.
  • On Wednesday the Minister of Health, Dr David Clark, announced that he had received the report of the Inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction – He Ara Oranga: report of the Government Inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction.  The report will likely be made public before the end of 2018 and the Government’s formal response will be published during March 2019.
  • On Wednesday the Māori Television Board announced that its Chief Executive, Keith Ikin, had resigned and will leave the organisation in early 2019. Mr Ikin (Ngāti Maniapoto, Ngāti Apakura, Ngāpuhi, Whanganui) has been with the organisation for 18 months. Deputy Chief Executive Shane Taurima will step into the Acting Chief Executive role until a replacement is appointed.
  • Last week Māori Television announced that its current affairs shows will end production shortly and will be replaced by a single brand in 2019. The current affairs programmes   Kawekōrero, Native Affairs and Rereātea will end in December and the news programme Te Kāea will end in February 2019.
  • Last week the Government released the Early childhood education draft strategic plan 2019-29 “He taonga te tamaiti, Every child a taonga”. Despite the title this document places little emphasis on tamaiti Māori or Māori mediums of learning.


Salient Māori News Items to E25 3 August 2018

  • Traci Houpapa ((Waikato Maniapoto, Taranaki, Tūwharetoa) has been appointed to the Treasury Board as a non- executive director.
  • La Verna King (Ngāti Kahu, Ngāti Paoa, Ngāti Kahungunu) has been appointed to a newly formed Independent panel which will consider the 2014 family justice reforms as they relate to resolving disputes about parenting arrangements or guardianship matters including the effectiveness of out-of-court processes, with a focus on any differential impacts on Māori children. The panel will report to the Minister of Justice with its recommendations no later than May 2019.
  • Today the Minister for Maori Development Nanaia Mahuta released the draft Māori language strategy Maihi Karauna. Pānui will provide a comprehensive review of Maihi Karauna next week E26 10 August 2018.  Public consultation closes 30 September. https://www.tpk.govt.nz/en/a-matou-kaupapa/maihi-karauna
  • A grouping of Crown Ministers are meeting with the Iwi Leaders Forum today to discuss freshwater rights. The group includes three Labour Party Cabinet Ministers, and James Shaw from the Green Party, but notably not Shane Jones from the New Zealand First Party.  Mr Jones has already publicly indicated New Zealand First will not support an iwi-collective water rights settlement under any conditions (and he personally will not even meet with the iwi leaders as a single grouping, only as individual iwi).  Possibly to appease the situation (or more sceptically to demonstrate efforts of Treaty partnership in advance of any legal action from the collective), Ministers will seek to discuss Māori business and economic development opportunities within the water storage sector.  e. bottling opportunities, irrigation for Māori land, improved supply for marae, and the like.
  • Ngāpuhi Treaty settlement discussions are continuing with the sixth meeting held between the Ministers for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations, Andrew Little, and two representatives from Te Kōtahitanga (Rudy Taylor and Pita Tipene) and two from Tūhoronuku (Hone Sadler and Sonny Tau.) Wider consultation with iwi members is expected to recommence soon.
  • Dr Pauline Kingi CMNZ has stepped down as leader for the Government Inquiry into the Appointment Process for a Deputy Commissioner of Police, Wally Haumaha. Dr Kingi had previously endorsed the professional competencies of Mr Haumaha on a social media website.
  • Last week general media reported that the Serious Fraud Office searched and removed documents from the Office of the Māori King. The search follows an investigation by the Charities Service into the spending of funds received by the now deregistered Ururangi Trust. Previously, from 2008 the Ururangi Trust received up tp $1.6 million annually from Waikato/Tainui, in order to support the Office of the Māori King.
  • Napier based social enterprise group “LIFT” have been awarded $375,000 to deliver a work readiness programme Poutama Rangatahi Hikina to 75 youth not in education, employment or training (NEET) across Hawke’s Bay.

Te Reo Māori Policy Discussions

Last year a round of debates started on the value and place of the Māori language in New Zealand, particularly after the widespread use by mainstream media of Māori language words and phrases during Māori language week in September. (For example the weather map on Television One was shown with Māori place names).  The debate reached a low point in early December, with Don Brash stating that Te Reo had no place in mainstream media, and was of no interest to most people, and Māori should essentially go away and speak Te Reo on their own.  Following on from that, this month Professor Paul Moon from Auckland University of Technology released a book that is said to claim, amongst other things, that compulsory Māori language in schools will negatively affect the language: and then the Leader of the Opposition, Bill English, was reported as saying “you can’t rely on a Government and a bureaucracy to save someone else’s language”.   For each of these items a peer rebuke has been issued: Kim Hill taking on Don Brash, Professor Pou Temara and also Hēmi Kelly taking on Professor Moon, and former Māori Party candidate Rāhui Papa taking on Bill English.

Accordingly, later this month we will provide an extended and specific briefing on the nature of these types of Māori language debates, and on the actual health of the Māori language.  First, however, our assessment of these three individual (white males) comments is as follows.

  • Don Brash is now the leader of ‘Hobson’s Choice’ – a lobby group that believes Māori are being given unwarranted group rights in New Zealand, and that should be stopped. In our view Mr Brash’s comments on Te Reo present as ideologically inconsistent with his core political views – i.e. his focus solely on acknowledging individual rights should mean people can speak Māori wherever and whenever they please, as their individual right should not be suppressed by the group demands of others (i.e. the people like him who ‘don’t want to hear’ Te Reo).  Given Mr Brash is highly articulate and well educated he is most likely to be aware of this inconsistency.  Accordingly, perhaps he has tapped into the Te Reo debate primarily as a means to extend his audience and promote his lobbying entity and its causes; which at present is focused on seeking to have any local government decisions to have a Māori ward overturned.  (They are campaigning in Whakatāne presently.)  The 2 December Radio NZ debate between Mr Brash and Ms Hill however is a firey exchange worth listening to (in part at least) particularly given its polite yet impolite format.
  • Professor Moon is a professor of history and not an academic in areas such as linguistics, socio-linguistics, or language revitalisation theory. Nor is he proficient in Te Reo, so his (lack of) creditability to publish in this area is noteworthy.  His newly released book is called Killing Te Reo Māori: An Indigenous Language Facing Extinction, and has now been reviewed by Hēmi Kelly, a Te Reo educator at the same university.[1]  Mr Kelly essentially finds Professor Moon’s work to inflate the negatives in language learning and revitalisation, ignoring the positives, and fundamentally wrong in its conclusions around Te Reo being more at risk than previously.  In our view  Professor Moon’s press release extracts used to promote this work are strongly worded negative statements, without academic research in support, and thus present as designed solely to attract attention and facilitate book sales.  We would recommend people read both the blurb and the review by Mr Kelly before purchasing this item.  Mr Kelly’s comments are freely available here:


  • Whilst we opine that Mr Brash and Professor Moon are, at least to a degree, deliberately seeking media sensationalism around Te Reo for their own personal causes, Mr English’s comments appear to be of a different ilk. What he actually said was more comprehensive than people may have grasped, namely:

the Government has some obligations through the Treaty. It’s met them in my view. We’ve spent a lot of money on TV, on resources for schools and so on. Probably a bit more can be done with resources for schools and teachers, but in the end it needs people who want to speak it … the owners of it need to speak it and that is people in their households. You can’t rely on a Government and a bureaucracy to save someone else’s language”.

  • In this statement, we consider Mr English has got it right in stating that Government is doing the type of activities it should to support the Māori language – although he missed out that many services (such as Māori radio and television) arose out of obligation, not care, and often developed off the back of litigation and protest by Māori. He has also downplayed the quality (or not) of service implementation by Government.  Is it possible some services are weak, e.g. is there sufficient Māori language teacher training available?  These are shortcomings, but his basic message that the Government is undertaking a reasonable range of action to support Te Reo Māori is correct, as is his thinking that Māori people speaking more Te Reo is essential too.  But where Mr English erred gravely was with the three word phrase “someone else’s language” – as if Māori are not part of real New Zealand society, or included in Government processes.  That was a mistake, but we suspect simply ‘poor English by English’ (sic) rather than a political statement against the Māori language, as it has subsequently been portrayed.

Overall we note this type of dialogue is occurring on a regular basis in the mainstream media now, and it gives rise to some obvious policy questions, such as: (a) what is the actual health of the Māori language – is it okay or not; and (b) are the right interventions to enhance Te Reo in place, and do they work?  As advised, we are undertaking a detailed assessment on these matters which will be provided later this month.

[Subscribers should also note we consider there is an ongoing confusion around Māori language words and phrases within English – i.e. should all schools teach some Te Reo to ensure improved pronunciation and better Māori cultural knowledge, versus increasing the use of Te Reo as the primary means of communication within Māori whānau households and communities.  This means media commentators are quite often talking about two quite different concepts within this debate, which adds some confusion.] 

[1] Subscribers will note we only review material freely available in the public domain so that sources can be reviewed directly.

Māori News Stories for the Week Ending 3 July 2015


  • Sir Wira Gardiner has been appointed the Chairperson to the Local Government Commission.
  • Michael Pohio has been appointed a director of the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA).
  • Dr Wayne Ngata has been appointed Chair of Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Māori (the Māori Language Commission).
  • Professor Rawinia Higgins and Charisma Rangipunga have been appointed as commissioners to Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Māori (the Māori Language Commission). The appointment is for three years
  • Ron Mark has been elected Deputy Leader of the New Zealand First Party.
  • Dayle Hunia has been appointed to the Environment Protection Authority (EPA) Board.

Māori News for the week ending 3 July 2015

  • Sonny Tau has been stood down as Chairperson of Tūhoronoku, following a recent investigation into his alleged illegal possession of dead kereru. Mr Sam Napia will become the Acting Chairperson.
  • On Wednesday Ngāti Tūwharetoa finalised the purchase of circa 8,500 hectares of property in the central North Island from the Department of Corrections.  The purchase includes the site of the Tongariro-Rangipo Corrections Facility and Hautu Prison Farm.  The Department of Corrections will continue to own prison buildings and will lease-back the prison facility land from the iwi. The right to purchase this land was provided for in the Central North Island Treaty Settlement.  The price of the land is circa $20 million, excluding forestry on the land which was also purchased (the forestry price is undisclosed).
  • On Thursday the Minister of Social Development, Ann Tolley, announced the successful organisations to receive funding from the Capability Investment Resource 2014/2015. Māori focussed organisations are:
  • Ngā Ngaru Rautahi O Aotearoa Incorporated;
  • Te Aratū Trust;
  • Te Hau Ora o Kaikohe Charitable Trust;
  • Te Ora Hou Ōtautahi Incorporated;
  • Te Ora Hou Whanganui Incorporated;
  • Te Rūnanganui o Ngāti Porou Trustee Ltd;
  • Te Taiwhenua o Heretaunga Charitable Trust;
  • Tūpoho – Iwi and Community Social Services Trust; and
  • Waikato-Tainui Te Kahanganui Inc
  • On Tuesday the Ministry of Health published (online) data tables on Mortality for 2012.  The table provides information on the underlying causes of all deaths and includes additional information such as age, gender and ethnicity.  Key Māori mortality statistics for 2012 are:
    • 10% of all deaths in New Zealand were Māori. In whole numbers 3,064 Māori died;
    • 35.8% of all deaths among 0 to 5 year olds were Māori. In whole numbers 139 tamariki Māori died;
    • 84.5% of deaths among Māori were attributed to some form of cancer.  In whole numbers circa 2,590 Māori died of a cancer related disease; and
    • 119 Māori died due to suicide.  Of these one was aged between 5 to 9 years, and 7 were aged between 10 and 14 years.
  • Data tables can be sourced at: http://www.health.govt.nz/publication/mortality-2012-online-tables

  • On Tuesday Statistics New Zealand released a fact sheet on people aged 65+ years living in New Zealand. The information which has been sourced from the 2013 Census data shows, on Census evening there were 607,000 people aged 65+ years living in New Zealand. Māori represented 5. 6% (circa 34,000) of people in this age group.The factsheet can be sourced at: http://www.stats.govt.nz/Census/2013-census/profile-and-summary-reports/qstats-65-plus-infographic.aspx  
  • Māori News Stories for the Week Ending 8 May 2015 (edition 15)

    • This week two renowned Māori language stalwarts died; Henrietta Maxwell (Ngāti Porou), and Erima Henare (Ngāti Hine).  Henrietta Maxwell was a founding figure of the Kōhanga Reo movement, author and Te Ataarangi advocate.  Erima Henare was Chairperson of the Te Taura Whiri i Te Reo Māori / the Māori Language Commission.  Haere atu rā kōrua, okioki mai rā ki roto i ngā ringaringa o te Wāhi Ngaro.
    • Last Friday the Aotearoa New Zealand Māori Business Leaders Awards were held in Auckland. Award winners were:
    • Kingi Smiler – Outstanding Māori business leader;
    • Mavis Mullins – Māori woman business leader;
    • Ngarimu Blair – Emerging Māori business leader;
    • Tainui Group Holdings – Outstanding Māori business leadership;
    • Ella Henry – Dame Mira Szaszy Māori alumni; and
    • Melanie Smith – Dame Mira Szaszy Māori alumni.

    Māori News Stories for the Week Ending 27 March 2015 (edition 9/2015)


    • Last Thursday the Members’ Bill of Meka Whaitiri was drawn from the ballot in parliament, and is now lodged on the Parliamentary Order Paper.[1] The bill is the Environmental Protection Authority (Protection of Environment) Amendment Bill.  Ms Whaitiri proposes to insert a new objective in the Environment Protection Authority Act 2011 to ensure the Authority must, “aim to protect, maintain and enhance New Zealand’s environment”.  In her view, this extended definition of purpose is required to ensure the Authority always puts environmental considerations ahead of other matters.  National Party Minister for the Environment, Nick Smith, however, considers that adding such words is superfluous, given the Authority’s sole purpose is to consider environmental matters.  He has indicated the Government will therefore vote against the bill.

      We have previously advised on provisions within this legislation area, particularly in relation to Māori and iwi concerns and submissions (Pānui 7/2012 refers).  Our assessment has been that this legislation underserves Māori.  In part this is because the Māori Advisory Committee established within the Act has a weak legislative mandate as it is unable to make binding recommendations on any party.  The Committee provides case-by-case considerations upon request, is advisory only, and is effectively toothless.  Accordingly from a Māori policy perspective there is scope to improve the legislative framework to better reflect Māori needs and aspirations.  It is then surprising that Ms Whaitiri, who is the parliamentarian representing Ika Rāwhiti constituents – i.e. she represents Māori only – appears to have excluded matters which impact on Māori from her sole legislative proposal.


    • Hinurewa Poutu and Dr Ruka Broughton have been appointed to the board of the Māori Language Commission / Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Māori.
    • Last week Te Puni Kōkiri launched Te Whakahura a Kupe, a web-based socio demographic database tool which disaggregates census data via iwi and rohe.  The database includes 98 iwi, and data sets available include various health, education, employment and housing information collected from both the 2006 and 2013 censuses.  (I.e. how many people of a particular iwi have employment, own their home, have tertiary qualifications, etc).  In our view this is a particularly useful tool for researchers and policy advisors, it can be viewed here:


    • On Wednesday Miraka received the inaugural ‘He Kai Kei Aku Ringa – Māori Excellence in Export’ award at the 2015 New Zealand International Business Awards.
    • This week the Annual General Meeting of Te Ohu Kaimoana was held.  Reports of the financial returns of both Aotearoa Fisheries and Sealord have arisen from this meeting, but are not yet publicly available. (We will review when published.)
    • On Thursday three finalist for the 2015 Ahuwhenua Trophy BNZ Māori Excellence in Farming Award for sheep and beef were announced.  The finalist are Mangaroa Station (located north-west of Wairoa) Paua Station (located north of Kaitaia) and Maranga Station (located south-west of Gisborne).  The winner will be named at the Awards dinner on May 29 in Whanganui.
    • Today Ngāruahine will receive an apology from the Crown for illegally incarcerating iwi members in the South Island during the 1880s.
    • On 30-31 March Te Wānanga o Raukawa and the Māori Unit within the New Zealand Council for Educational Research (Te Wāhanga) will co-hosting a forum on rangatiratanga; entitled ‘Kei Tua o te Pae’.  Details can be found here:


    • This week legal action between a grouping of former board members of Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Whāngaroa and the Ministry of Education has been withdrawn.  (The legal challenge arose from the removal of the school board in 2013).  By way of background, in June 2014 the Secretary of Education and Chief Executive of the Ministry of Education, Peter Hughes, dissolved the Board, and replaced it with a commissioner.  This action followed significant student / whanau exit from the school; concerns about an inappropriate relationship between a former principal (Louisa Mutu) and a student; and concerns that board elections were not held in accordance with Education Act (allegedly no formal advertisements, only school newsletter information and letters).

      The former board members objected to the need for a commissioner, indicating that they had address the conduct of the former principal appropriately, and had advertised elections in a means suitable their community.  They also objected to the commissioner appointed, Mr Larry Forbes.  Accordingly they had originally been seeking a High Court injunction against the interventions.  However in December 2014 Hōhepa Campbell took over the commissioner role and new board elections were facilitated this year.  Election results are now pending.  (Pānui 21/2014 refers.)

    [1] By way of background, Members’ Bills are proposed changes to legislation lodged by individual members of parliament.  Members are allowed to lodge one bill each of their own design (i.e. it is not required to be a ‘party policy’ bill).  If the bill is drawn in the parliamentary ballot then it is placed on the Order Paper (i.e. parliamentary agenda), and will receive at least a first reading in parliament, and be voted on at that point.

    Māori News Stories for the week ending 27 February 2015

    • On Wednesday the Minister of Education, Hekia Parata, issued a media statement confirming that she is pleased that the Te Kōhanga Reo National Trust Board is going to consult with kōhanga whānau about a new governance structure.  This next phase of consultation is scheduled to commence in March.  (Subscribers, however, may recall that in March 2014 the National Trust indicated they would “fast track” work to address their governance and financial issues arising, and this included changing the composition of its Board.)  Minister Parata notes that while this is a private matter, until it is resolved the Government is unable to progress solutions to the Trust’s Treaty of Waitangi claim.  (Pānui 9/2014 provides background of the Trust’s governance issues and Pānui 36/2012 provides information on the Treaty of Waitangi claim.)
    • Following the death of Apirana Mahuika, Selwyn Parata has been appointed Chair of Te Rūnanganui o Ngāti Porou and Rei Kohere has been appointed as Deputy Chair.  Mr Parata and Mr Kohere will hold these positions until November, when regular elections are scheduled for the iwi.
    • Te Taura Whiri i Te Reo Māori / the Māori Language Commission is seeking to establish a Te Reo only zone at the Te Matatini festival being held in Ōtautahi. The festival commences from next Monday.

    Māori news stories for the week ending 20 February 2015 (edition 4/2015)


    • This week the Māori Affairs Select Committee heard oral submissions in relation to the Māori Language (Te Reo Māori).  A number of speakers expressed a level of concern with the structural proposal within the Bill, to create a new Māori language entity called Te Mātāwai.  For example, Sir Edward Taihakurei Durie, for the New Zealand Māori Council, suggested “form follows function” and that the Bill was not clear on the actual Māori language strategy.  Written submissions are not yet available for perusal.  (Pānui 25/2014 provides a review of this Bill and outlines the structural proposals being made.)
    • This week Te Wānanga o Aotearoa advised that phase two of its current restructuring is to be implemented (phase one brought its Open Wananga subsidy company back into the wānanga).  Phase two is focused on the regional network of campuses.  The wānanga intends to consolidate its existing six ‘territories’ into three ‘districts / takiwā’.
      In the new structure Tamaki Makaurau and Northland will become one takiwā called Te Ihu.  The second takiwā is Te Waenga, which will include sites from the Waikato region, Waiariki, Bay of Plenty and Poverty Bay.  The third takiwā, Te Kei, include sites from Hawkes Bay, Manuwatu, Taranaki, Wanganui, Wairarapa, Wellington and the South Island.  Some redundancies are expected after employment consultation processes conclude.
    • The New Zealand Māori Council has released a series of brochures on its history and services, including a proposed freshwater policy framework.  We are presently giving these documents further consideration.  The brochures can be found here:


    • Tau Henare has been appointed as a Treaty Negotiator to facilitate discussions between the Crown, Te Whānau-a-Apanui and Te Whakatōhea.  Mr Henare also received media attention this week in relation to a charge of breaching a name suppression order in 2011.  Mr Henare pleaded guilty, apologised for wasting police and court time, and was fined $1,200.
    • In December the Wanganui District Council voted in favour of applying to the New Zealand Geographic Board to change the spelling of Wanganui to Whanganui.  In addition, the Council also determined to consult further on this matter, and invited submissions (including online form submissions).  Circa 2,000 submissions have been made, which the Council will provide to the Board for its consideration.
    • On Tuesday a group of children affected by the 2007 Police raids in Ruatoki travelled to Wellington as guests of the New Zealand Police. The purpose of the hikoi was to help restore relationships between Tūhoe and the Police.  (Pānui 17/2013 refers.)

    Māori News Stories for the Week Ending 5 December 2014 (edition 43)

    • Dr Wharehuia Milroy, Charisma Rangipunga, Dr Ruakere Hond, Dr Rawinia Higgins and Charlie Te Pana have been appointed as members of the Māori Language Advisory Group.  This group will provide advice to the Minister for Māori Development, Te Ururoa Flavell, on the Māori Language (Te Reo Māori) Bill.  Minister Flavell has indicated that he considers the bill requires refinements.  (The bill is current being considered by the Māori Affairs Select Committee.  Public submissions closed today.)
    • Jacqui Caine (Ngāi Tahu) has been appointed as New Zealand’s next Ambassador to Chile.
    • This week media outlets are reporting that Sealord has confirmed that 70 factory jobs, 11 office-based jobs and 30 contract roles will be disestablished at its Nelson wetfish factory.  (Sealord is 50% owned by Aotearoa Fisheries via a holding company, Kura, and in turn Aotearoa Fisheries is owned by iwi quota holders.)[1]
    • The New Zealand Māori Council has released its briefing to the incoming Government on its website.  In addition the Council has also released a Water Policy Statement.  We are reviewing these documents and will advise further in edition 44/2014.Note we will undertake these reviews in conjunction with a review of the Waitangi Tribunal findings relating to the Council’s claims concerning potential amendments to the Māori Community Development Act, which is the establishment legislation for the Council.  [By way of background, the Government consulted on options for amending this legislation in mid-2013, which resulted in the Council filing this Treaty claim, (WAI 2417), which was heard in March this year.  In sum, the Council’s view is that this legislation creates a form of Crown/Māori partnership, but the consultation process on amending the Act did not take that into account.  Pānui editions 36/2013, 44/2013 and 45/2013 provide further details on the consultation and proposals, and details on the Council’s response and claim.  This Tribunal’s report is expected to be available for public comment from next Monday.
    • In January the In-Zone Education Foundation will open a new residence for fifteen Māori and Pacific Island students wanting to attend Epsom Girls Grammar.  (By way of background, the In-Zone Education Foundation residence for Auckland Boys Grammar students was opened in 2011.)  All students living at the In-Zone residences are Māori or Pacific students from out-of-zone low income families, who would otherwise not be eligible to attend these schools.  Families of the students attending grant shared guardianship to the In-Zone Director, Terrance Wallace, which allows for the school enrolments to occur.
    • Maraeroa C Incorporation has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with a Beijing based company (name withheld). The joint venture will assist expanding Maraeroa C Incorporation ginseng plantation and provides an entry into the China market.
    • On Wednesday Ngāti Kauwhata and members of the Fielding community staged a peaceful protest to raise their concerns regarding the health of the Ōroua River.
    • The Waitangi Tribunal urgent hearing into the Ngāpuhi claims settlement process commenced this week.  In essence this claim challenges the right of the Crown to settle Treaty breaches with Tūhoronuku, in that it alleges the mandating process used by the Crown was of itself a Treaty of Waitangi breach (Pānui 41/2014 refers).
    • The Education Review Office has released a November report on Hato Petera College.  As quality concerns exist, the Office is reviewing this College at least every two years.  The key conclusion of this report is that:“Since 2012 the principal and staff have worked hard to improve student learning and welfare. Significant progress has resulted in a curriculum that raises student achievement.  Unfortunately, a lack of agreement with the Catholic Diocese about property and personnel matters, are impacting negatively on the board’s ability to continue improvements” (page 8).We consider that the conclusion is unhelpfully coy, and distorts the issues that have presented for this College in recent years.  I.e. do improvements bring the College up to an acceptable educational standard or not?  Further the issue around property, and the relationship between the Church, the School Trust Board, and Ministry of Education appears to be very significant (including a Treaty of Waitangi claim), but the Review Office report does not satisfactory explore ramifications.  The extract below provides a lens onto the type of issues presenting.

      “There is no clear agreement between the Catholic Diocese, Te Whānau o Hato Petera Trust, and the Ministry of Education as to who has the responsibility for the hostel buildings, and the land on which the buildings are situated.

      There is also uncertainty around the future tenure of the lease agreement on the school and the hostel facilities. The Catholic Diocese has offered a short-term lease extension, which leaves college and hostel boards with no clear commitment for future sustainability.” (Page 5.)

    [1]There is no public media statement from Sealord to confirm this.

    Māori news stories for the week ending 28 March 2014

    * Last week Pānui advised on matters pertaining to the Te Kōhanga Reo National Trust Board (Pānui 9/2014 refers). On Monday the National Trust released a media statement indicating they will ‘fast track’ work to address issues arising, and this includes changing the composition and membership of its Board. To this end, a national hui is being scheduled for next month.

    The National Trust advises they, and their subsidy, Te Pātaka Ōhanga, will fully co-operate with the Serious Fraud Office investigation and the Charities Services investigation. They also advise there are now five directors of Te Pātaka Ōhanga; Dame Iritana Tāwhiwhirangi, Druis

    Barrett, Wharehuia Milroy, Tukoirirangi Morgan (new) and Tata Parata (new).19

    * Paora Maxwell has been appointed as the incoming Chief Executive of the Māori Television Service. There has previously been contention in regards to the appointment process used by Board of the Service in regards to this role (Pānui 31/2013 refers). Mr Maxwell commences the position in May.

    * This week the Chief Executive of Sealord, Graham Stuart, announced that he will conclude his role with the company later this year.

    * Last Saturday a 278 hectare dairy farming venture was officially opened at Rangihāmama Farm, near Kaikohe. This is a conversion of former pastoral land into dairy operations by Māori land owners working in partnership with Te Tumu Paeroa (the Office of the Māori Trustee). The owners are Omapere Taraire E and Rangihamama X3A Ahu Whenua Trust. Support for this initiative has also been provided by the Ministry for Primary Industries and Lincoln University.

    * This week Te Māngai Pāho announced they, in partnership with New Zealand on Air, will jointly establish a $500,000 fund to purchase Māori orientated internet broadcasts (web-series). Five projects will be funded, two of which will be in the Māori language, and three will be ‘stories about Māori’. Applications close 30 May 2014.

    * An online petition has commenced to lobby for continued funding for Ngā Pae o Te Maramatanga, a Māori-focused Centre of Research Excellence. (Pānui 7/2014 outlines this matter.) The petition is located at www.avaaz.org

    Māori news stories for the week ending 21 February 2014


    • This week Shane Taurima resigned as the Head of Māori and Pacific Programmes at Television New Zealand, after TV3 broadcast information which showed he was actively involved with Labour Party campaigning.  Television New Zealand has now launched an internal inquiry into the editorial independence of the broadcasters Māori and Pacific programming from 2013.
    • This week the Māori Television Service has reported that Lynda Tawhiwhirangi is seeking “an exit package of $400,000” from Te Pātaka Ōhanga.  By way of background, Mrs Tawhiwhirangi is/was the General Manager of Te Pātaka Ōhanga, a charitable company owned by the Kōhanga Reo National Trust.   Mrs Tawhiwhirangi was stood-down in October last year, as investigations into potentially fraudulent and/or inappropriate financial expenditure at the company became subject to investigation by the Trust, and also by the Government.   This followed investigative articles by the Māori Television Service on the use of the Trust’s funds.  We advise no other sources have verified this recent article by the Service, and that the Ministerial commissioned financial audit into public funding for the Kōhanga Reo National Trust has not yet been released.  (Ministers originally indicated it would be completed by early 2014.)
    • On Wednesday the three finalists for the 2014 Ahuwhenua Trophy Māori Excellence in Farming Award (Dairy) were announced.  They are: Putauaki Trust, (Himiona Dairy Farm); Ngāti Awa Farms (Ngakauroa Dairy Farm); and Te Rua o Te Moko Ltd.  The winner will be announced at an Awards Dinner on 13 June.
    • On Tuesday Census data published by Statistics New Zealand showed the Māori population across the Christchurch region increased 12.4% from 30,591 in 2006 to 34,371 on Census evening 2013.  This is a significant change, possibly reflecting new employment opportunities in the region relating to rebuilding activities, following the earthquakes.


    E1A 24 January 2014 Māori news stories 21 December to 24 January 2014


    This paper provides a summary of key Māori interest news items from 21 December to 24 January 2014. Analytical assessments of policy matters will be provided in regular Pānui briefs.

    Appointments, honours and nominations

    * 2014 New Year’s Honours’ list recipients for Service to Māori were:

    Knights Companion (KNZM);

    o Dr Noble Thomson Curtis

    Officers of the New Zealand Order of Merit (ONZM)

    o Hekenukumai Busby

    o Marjorie Joe

    Members of the New Zealand Order of Merit (MNZM)

    o Kathleen Jehly

    o Amoroa Luke

    Queens Service Medal (QSM)

    o Kingiareta Biddle

    o Reverend Judith Cooper1

    * Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Māori, (The Māori Language Commission / Te Taura Whiri) has established a new Māori Language Research Centre, He Puna Whakarauroa. The current Chief Executive of Te Taura Whiri, Glenis Philip-Barbara, will become the establishment Chief Executive of the Centre. Pita Paraone has been appointed Acting Chief Executive of Te Taura Whiri.

    * Dame Iritana Tawhiwhirangi and Dr Lance O’Sullivan have been nominated for the 2014 Kiwibank New Zealander of the Year award (amongst others). The winner will be announced on 26 February.

    * On Tuesday the Prime Minister, John Key, confirmed that the National Party has an ongoing interest in maintaining a relationship agreement with the Māori Party (and others), after the 2014 election (should the National Party be returned to govern). Mr Key also delivered a ‘state of the nation’ speech on Thursday, although we note this did not discuss any issues specific to Māori. However he, and other leaders of the main political parties are arriving at Ratana Pā today to commemorate the birth of Tahupōtiki Rātana. We will be reviewing speech materials from these celebrations and will provide a summary assessment of any relevant policy matters in Pānui edition 2/2014.

    * The Speaker of the House, David Carter, has requested a review of pōwhiri protocols at parliament, particularly in relation to establishing appropriate seating arrangements for female dignities. He has indicated a preference to modernise arrangements within parliament, to ensure acceptability to a diversified parliament, whilst appropriately upholding iwi protocols.

    * In December, Norwegian company Statoil was granted an oil exploration permit for the Reinga-Northland Basin. Te Rarawa Iwi Chair, Haami Piripi, has indicated that although Te Rarawa does not support the exploration activities, he is formally requesting that the Government establish an iwi-led oil-exploration monitoring programme. This request will be made at upcoming iwi leaders-to-Crown Waitangi meetings.

    * On 24 December the Waitangi Tribunal ruled on the application for an urgent hearing for WAI 2417. This claim, filed by the New Zealand Māori Council, relates to processes adopted by the Crown for the reform of the Māori Community Development Act 1962. (This is the establishment Act for the Māori Council and the Māori Wardens.) The Tribunal ruled in favour of the claimants (the New Zealand Māori Council), and has indicated that an urgency hearing should be held in March this year. Pānui 36/2013 outlines the three initial aspects of the claim (two of which were determined to meet the threshold for urgency).2 The Tribunal ruling from Judge Fox is 18-pages but is summarised in the following paragraph:

    “We consider that there are grounds for urgency as this is an exceptional case because of the unique nature of this claim, the history of the legislation and its recognition of the right of Māori to self-government, the unique nature of the Council system and the inextricable link and development of the Māori Wardens under the agency of Māori communities and the District Councils.”


    * In late December Mana Ahuriri (a collective of hapū in Napier) signed an Agreement in Principle with the Crown. The agreement includes financial and commercial redress of $19.5 million.3

    * On 23 December, the Waitangi Tribunal released a Mangatū Remedies Report.4 The Tribunal agreed all applicants had well-founded claims, but declined to make binding recommendations to return forestry lands; as any such rulings could not be assured to be fair and equitable between claimant groups, and/or proportionate to the nature of the Treaty breaches.

    General matters Māori news stories for the week ending 14 June 2013

    • Last Friday Te Awahohonu Forest Trust – Tarawera Station was named as the winner of the 2013 Ahuwhenua Trophy, BNZ Māori Excellence in Farming Award.  The winner of the 2013 Ahuwhenua Young Māori Sheep & Beef Farmer of the Year award was Jordan Smith.

    • This week Jane Fletcher, former Deputy Director of the Office of Treaty Settlements, was named as the head of the newly formed Post Settlement Commitments Unit, which is being established within the Ministry of Justice.  (This unit’s purpose is to help ensure Crown commitments within Treaty Settlements are upheld.)

    • Last Friday the (former) Office of the Māori Trustee was rebranded, and commenced operating under a new name ‘Te Tumu Paeroa’.

    • On Wednesday Victoria University of Wellington launched “Kura App”, a Māori language application for Apple I-phones.

    • Mā te Reo funding applications for 2013 – 2014 will open on 1 July and close 9 August 2013.  Mā te Reo is administered by Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Māori / the Māori Language Commission.  The fund provides financial support for community-originated projects that increase language use proficiency, and strengthen the ability of communities to lead language regeneration.

    • During June and July 2013 Statistics NZ will interview around 5,000 Māori for a Māori well-being survey entitled Te Kupenga.  Information from the survey will be available in the first half of 2014.

    • Tai Tokerau Networks (a consortium of three Northland iwi – Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Whātua, Te Rūnanga o Te Rarawa, and Te Rūnanga o Whaingaroa) are looking for new investors to fund the second stage of a fibre-optic cable network to deliver high-speed internet from Whangarei to Waitiki Landing.  The first stage of the network – Auckland to Whangarei – was completed in May 2012.  Earlier this week a spokesperson for the consortium expressed disappointment that large telecommunications companies, Telecom and Vodafone, were not leasing the Auckland to Whangarei cable network, given it is the only high speed network available beyond Auckland.