Waitangi – inclusion, protest and handouts

It is to be expected that there there will be some sort of protests and attention seeking leading up to or on Waitangi Day. That is sort of a tradition. If there are protests the media will be on to them – they can sometimes dominate coverage, even though they are only a small part of proceedings.

Inclusiveness has been promoted in the form of earpieces for politicians so they can hear translations of speeches (presumably the ones spoken in Māori).

NZ Herald: Changes for official powhiri at Waitangi

For the first time, politicians and dignitaries will be given earpieces to hear the translated words of their hosts during the official welcome to Waitangi next week.

The powhiri was until recently held at Ti Tii Marae. It was moved over concerns the event had become a “circus” and moved to Te Whare Runanga on the upper marae at the Treaty Grounds.

The idea was that of Māori Crown Relations Minister Kelvin Davis, who has also introduced changes to the way the powhiri on February 5 is conducted.

“We’re trying to build on the good atmosphere that was generated last year, and the idea is to return dignity and decorum to proceedings,” Davis told the Weekend Herald.

“In previous years, whoever was the government would go on and be bolstered by officials and CEs and there’d be a big jostle for position, and the Opposition was just left to fend for themselves at a later powhiri.”

All parties had agreed to go on as one group this year for one parliamentary powhiri.

“We’ve organised the simultaneous translation earpieces for everybody. It’s about being inclusive and I think it’s the way New Zealand needs to head, where everybody understands what everyone’s saying so we don’t talk past each other,” said Davis.

“It’s a small thing but I think it means a lot to those people who in the past felt excluded. We want to celebrate New Zealand’s day, and it all started here in Waitangi.”

John Key stopped going to Waitangi events after 2015, and Bill English chose not to go while national leader, but Simon Bridges has decided to attend.

“I think every leader has to make their own decision. For me, it’s my first opportunity as leader to do it. I’m really keen to and I’m looking forward to it. It’s our country’s day. The Treaty of Waitangi is so clearly part of the fabric of New Zealand and it recognises the special place of Māori in our bicultural foundations.”

Jacinda Ardern will be leading a large Labour delegation, with most of their MPs attending. Last year she was the first female prime minister to speak during the powhiri, where she said:

“When we return in one year, in three years, I ask you to ask us what we have done for you”.

This year she and Shane Jones have announced $100 million investment to support Māori landowners and drive regional growth

The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) will invest up to $100 million to help unlock the economic potential of whenua Māori and build prosperity in our regions, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones have announced today.

“An integral part of any inclusive and successful regional economic development strategy lies with supporting Māori landowners to create new opportunities that will lift incomes and the wellbeing of our regions,” Jacinda Ardern said.

“Access to capital remains a challenge for Māori landowners as the special status of their land means commercial banks are less willing to lend to them. I’m pleased that through the PGF, we’re in a unique position to be able to support these landowners.

“Funding will enable Māori to access the capital required to progress projects which are investment-ready and will ultimately support moves towards higher-value land use.”

“I’m proud we’re able to make this announcement today, which is a vital step in creating greater prosperity around New Zealand,” Jacinda Ardern said.

Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones and other ministers joined the Prime Minister at Otamatea Marae in the Kaipara district to make the announcement.

“Supporting Māori economic development is a key focus of the Provincial Growth Fund.  That’s because lifting the productivity of Māori land will have enormous benefits for regional economies and it is an opportunity we cannot afford to ignore,” Shane Jones said

And Labour cannot afford not to promote Government handouts.

Also Investing to kick-start key infrastructure in Kaipara

The Government will help pave the way for future economic growth in Kaipara with a $20.39m investment from the Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) to strengthen the district’s transport infrastructure and food and horticulture sector.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones made the announcement at Otamatea Marae in Kaipara today.

”There has been a long history of underinvestment in Northland, particularly in infrastructure. The Government is absolutely committed to investing in the public services and infrastructure that make our country and communities strong,” Jacinda Ardern said.

On the inclusive front, Don Brash gets to have a say at Waitangi again: Hobson’s Pledge spokesman Don Brash to speak at Waitangi

Former politician Don Brash has been invited to speak at the lower marae at Waitangi, where he was once pelted with mud by protesters angry at his infamous Orewa speech.

Brash, who was at the time the National Party leader, was hit in the face as he spoke to reporters at Waitangi in 2004, just a few days after the speech to Orewa Rotarians in which he railed against special treatment of Māori.

He is now spokesman for Hobson’s Pledge, a group which campaigns against racial separatism or favouritism under the Treaty of Waitangi.

Also: Destiny Church leader Bishop Brian Tamaki to speak at Waitangi event

A battle of the Bishops is shaping up at Waitangi this week between Destiny Church’s Bishop Brian Tamaki and Te Tai Tokerau Anglican Bishop Te Kitohi Pikaahu who will be holding services at the same time at different locations.

The official Waitangi Day Anglican service is held at 10am at Te Whare Rūnanga on the Treaty Grounds.

At the same time, Tamaki will be speaking at Te Tii Marae. He is bringing with him around 2000 supporters, many of them the Tu Tangata Riders.

Reuben Taipari, who has organised the forum tent at Te Tii, where speakers including Don Brash will appear this year, said he had invited Tamaki to speak there but the invitation had been declined.

“Now that the forum’s full, of course, I think he regrets that he’s not participating. So his idea is to call up his own facility and attract all the attention over there. And I’m sure that he’ll get some. So good luck to him.

So there should be plenty for the media to report on.

Waitangi Day is on Wednesday. It is a big day for Māori in the far north, and also for politicians. There will be other less prominent events around the country.

 

44 Comments

  1. Gezza

     /  4th February 2019

    How unfortunate that our main tv channels are incapable of providing good coverage of Waitangi events and speeches. Only the odd sound-bite, video of Jacinda, some cameos by other pollies. This year, given that the whole event seems to have opened up to some possibly decent korero and argument, the speeches & counter-speeches themselves might be worth seeing more of, rather than anything minor that can be sensationalised as usual.

    Maori tv channels might be better but if too much coverage is in Maori then unless there are sub-titles they mightn’t be great for non-Maori speakers either.

    • PartisanZ

       /  4th February 2019

      In my experience Maori TV does a vastly better job of covering Waitangi … including “feel the wairua” segments with general public and stallholders …

      Pretty sure it’s at least subtitled … and I recall quite a lot is korero Pakeha …

      Pakeha/Tauiwi can always hoatu i roto i te kaha too … make the effort …

    • Gezza

       /  4th February 2019

      Just had a listen. Good interview I thought. Shane Jones briefly calls him out of date in a short audio clip, Don gives the same views he always does asking why should Maori have more rights than other New Zealand citizens, Guyon asks him some pertinent questions, Don says he’s going to the Lower Marae to speak mainly about other things he doesn’t want to disclose beforehand (possibly economics).

    • Gezza

       /  4th February 2019

      EDITORIAL: We could all do with talking less and listening more. That is a good rule in life generally, but it is especially true in politics and the noisy subset of political thought and activism that occurs online.

      The most encouraging thing that former National Party leader Don Brash said during an interview with RNZ’s Guyon Espiner​ on Monday was that he was going to Waitangi to listen. Espiner was of course talking to Brash about his decision to speak at Te Tii Marae at Waitangi on Tuesday.

      In [his Orewa] speech, he warned of “Treaty separatism” and the “grievance industry”. Fifteen years later, his belief that Māori enjoy special treatment generally remains unchanged.

      ​But views such as Brash’s have moved further to the fringe since then. Current National leader Simon Bridges, himself Māori, says the picture of Pākehā-Māori relations in New Zealand is more “nuanced” than that espoused by Brash and Hobson’s Pledge, the group Brash often speaks for.

      Brash was invited by Ngāpuhi member Reuben Taipari, who explained that Brash will be one of a group of speakers at a forum.

      But Taipari has recognised that Brash’s is one of many views and that it may be germane to the history of the Treaty in New Zealand and the settlements of recent decades. Taipari explained that “if we are going to improve our relationships, for our country to understand each other, we have to come together and hear each other’s opinions”.

      It is always better to invite critics into the tent and hear them out, rather than leave both sides misinformed because they avoided direct communication. Plus, Brash has some expertise. He has been asked to talk about economics, particularly economic prospects in Northland. His advice will be timely as Ngāpuhi are currently in a stand-off with the Government over their Treaty settlement.

      Brash will undoubtedly face criticism at Waitangi. The criticism may get personal as well as ideological, although his safety has been guaranteed by Ngāpuhi.

      It is of course fiercely ironic that Brash is permitted to relate views that some see as anti-Māori on a marae at Waitangi but was not allowed to speak to students at a New Zealand university, which should be a site for open discussion.

      Bans and censorship are nearly always counter-productive. Thomas’ ban gave Brash more attention than he would ever have received had the event gone ahead. He even became a free speech hero in the eyes of some.

      Can anything else be seen in Brash’s invitation? Perhaps.

      Waitangi Day in 2018 was the peak of then-new Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s political honeymoon, a moment symbolised in Ardern feeding the multitudes when she cooked a Waitangi Day breakfast. But there are doubts from some Māori that promises made then are coming to fruition as quickly as they might. Brash’s appearance as the ghost of Waitangi Day past is one of several signs that the celebration may itself be more nuanced in 2019 than it was in 2018.
      https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/110352870/editorial-brashs-waitangi-invitation-is-a-positive-sign

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  4th February 2019

        He also said something about having racism out in the open, so he is being disingenuous about the Don Brash invite.

        • Gezza

           /  4th February 2019

          Maybe he is, but maybe he isn’t. Whether Brash is biased against Maori and therefore racist is a debate that’s worth having as long as people who agree with him want to keep bringing it up. I don’t think he’s racist. I think he’s culturally blinkered. But I support his right to take the view that everyone has equal opportunity here if they want to avail themselves of those opportunities, and for others to dispute that opinion and provide their reasons for doing do.

          Korero such as this is healthy, in a democracy like ours, in my view. Otherwise one simply gets polarised opinion with no understanding of the other viewpoint.

          • Kitty Catkin

             /  4th February 2019

            I don’t think that he’s either, and I know him. My late husband knew him better, but I have heard and talked to him often; he’s been to my house more than once.

            He’s been grossly misrepresented by the ignorant.

          • PartisanZ

             /  4th February 2019

            Damn right its healthy! And it’s also extremely progressive, compassionate and strategic by Maori … incredibly politically astute … Maori are extending the hand of friendship.

            When did Hobson’s Pledge or any of its more extreme affiliates ever ‘reach out’ like this to Maori?

            One man deserves to be getting a lot more publicity for this –

            “But Reuben Taipari has recognised that Brash’s is one of many views and that it may be germane to the history of the Treaty in New Zealand and the settlements of recent decades. Taipari explained that “if we are going to improve our relationships, for our country to understand each other, we have to come together and hear each other’s opinions”.

            The two incredibly important decades leading up to our new codified Constitution and our Bicentennial may have just found their Te Whiti o Rongomai?

            “No good thing has ever been wrought by force … there is no reason why force should continue to have power over us”

  2. High Flying Duck

     /  4th February 2019

    The $100m fund is good policy if correctly administered and treated in the same way as bank lending would be. Maori ownership structures have never fitted into the norms required by banks and it has been a genuine impediment to growth and development.

    Maori have shown themselves to be an entrepreneurial race when the opportunity presents and hopefully this will provide a good kick start to being able to leverage their assets for the greater good of their tribes.

    Unless bureaucracy or Shane Jones cronyism gets in the way of course.

    • Gezza

       /  4th February 2019

      Proper allocation, management and monitoring of the spending will be critical, as with any development fund.

      • High Flying Duck

         /  4th February 2019

        Not alone in the concern re oversight:

  3. Finbaar Rustle

     /  4th February 2019

    Waitangi day has been Maori bashing day on European media for the past 45 years.
    99% of Maori do not go to Waitangi yet 99% of media coverage is about Waitangi
    and 99% of the coverage is about protest..
    The 100 m invested in Maori land is = to 3 days of Super beneficiaries hand outs.
    97% of those receiving the Super beneficiaries handout are European.

  4. Alan Wilkinson

     /  4th February 2019

    Banks won’t lend because Maori land is unsaleable and therefore has no value as security. Multiple ownership gets worse every generation and makes decisions, actions and maintenance impossible.

    Instead of addressing the real problem and cause Labour will throw taxpayers’ money into the air as usual where it will vanish without trace.

    • Gezza

       /  4th February 2019

      Simon Bridges says he’s got the solution

      On The AM Show on Monday, Bridges said the $100m on Māori land was “a complete waste of money”.

      “Basically the Government is making exactly the same mistake they’ve made on KiwiBuild, and for the same reasons. They think if they throw cash at something, for the politics of it, that gets them somewhere. It doesn’t.

      “Just as with KiwiBuild you need RMA reform, here what you need for the complexity of the multiple landowners, ain’t cash, it’s legal reform. We’ve got the law to do that, the Te Ture Whenua Māori land law reform bill, that’s what’s required to unlock this.

      https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/110349877/simon-bridges-likens-spending-on-maori-land-to-beads-and-blankets

      But I dunno what his bill proposes. Certainly seems like the current legal situation with Maori land is no benefit to Maori.

      • David

         /  4th February 2019

        It would have gone a long way to solve the problem of Maori going to commercial lenders to develop opportunities, it would also help with Maori tipping their own money into developing their land by simplifying the titles.
        It was worth a go its a shame Labour havent picked this one up and given it a try, perhaps they prefer Maori subservient and having to wait for the white queen Ardern to visit them and sprinkle some dollars around.

      • PartisanZ

         /  4th February 2019

        I suspect Maori are justifiably reticent about “legal reform” of land ownership dating back to the days of The Maori Land Court designed to convert ‘native title’ into individual private property for the purpose of facilitating land sales to Pakeha …

        My limited understanding of MLC is that, despite it being Pakeha who craved ownership, the burden of proof of ownership fell upon Maori …

        “Firstly, land was easily sold to private purchasers, leading to very rapid Māori land loss and consequential impoverishment. Secondly, the court process was very expensive for Māori. Thirdly, the new system of individualised titles had serious impacts on Māori social organisation.

        One problem was the ‘10 owners rule’ of the 1865 act, which limited the number of owners on a certificate of title to 10. The 10 may have been intended as representatives who held the land as trustees for the other owners, but in practice, once they received Crown grants they became legal owners.” – Te Ara

        Then, when the Waitangi Tribunal and Treaty Settlements came along, the burden of proof of illegal alienation fell upon Maori AGAIN!

        I’d be skeptical about processes such as these too …

        • Gezza

           /  4th February 2019

          I had a chat to Possum up in Northland about the insurmountable problems tracking down & getting consent from thousands of owners if you want to build or do something somewhere on a patch of Maori land for yourself.

          Even allowing for the evident general distrust of the Maori Land Court it seems to current legal situation is hopeless for Maori who have ownership of land and can’t do anything for themselves with it because someone else can come along and say “Hey we’re moving in, or we’re using it – it’s our land too !”

          This situation needs some sort of sensible resolution, it seems to me. Even if it means, I dunno, something like transferring ownership of some land to an iwi or hapu authority to which individuals can apply for exclusive use or ownership.

          • PartisanZ

             /  4th February 2019

            Maybe let Maori decide on a hapu by hapu or iwi by iwi basis?

            • Gezza

               /  4th February 2019

              A compounding problem seems to be that shares in Maori land can get diluted and expanded over time by marriage/relationships & when they are left as bequests or because of what happens to them when there is no will. Whatever the exact problem is, the current multiple ownership seems to make it impossible in some circumstances for an individual to do anything with their share. Whether and how that problem could be resolved may need a law change. But good luck with that. I’m not sure how one would even approach this – it’s likely to be opposed by other members of the hapu, and for different hapu and iwi to have opposing views. But our conversation did seem to highlight a practical problem I never even knew existed.

      • High Flying Duck

         /  4th February 2019

        If they can fix up Maori land ownership through legal amendments this would be a better way to go. However, as you mention below there are numerous issues to be resolved as “ownership” is a fluid thing and the rights of tribal members needs to be considered.

        If the problem can be resolved – either with the Labour handout or National’s legal framework it will revolutionise the Maori economy.

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  4th February 2019

          No bank in their right mind would have land owned by a number of people, no matter who they are, as security for a loan. If I borrowed money on my house and couldn’t pay it, the lender would have the house.

          • High Flying Duck

             /  4th February 2019

            Correct – that’s why either a legal definition allowing a defined group to become responsible for the land needs to be determined (National), or a specific fund needs setting up to provide the funding banks won’t (Labour).

            Both options have high hurdles to overcome if they want to implement successfully, but given the status quo is so destructive and wasteful it is good that the parties are putting their mind to it.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  4th February 2019

              It’s all fatuous until they reinvent private property rights and Maori as owners of them. The quality of the land depends on the quality of the owner – not his or her race or fractional genes. The Left learn nothing from the tragedy of the comons even when it unfolds on hundreds of thousands of hectares before their eyes. Maybe Don Brash will note this elephant in their room at Waitangi.

            • PartisanZ

               /  4th February 2019

              Speaking of elephants … Let’s discuss the real elephant in the room …

              First, it is stretching anyone’s definition of “the commons” to call Maori land ‘the commons’. This might be the case, for instance, if Maori governed the whole show … but they don’t … and their ‘possession’ of land befuddles Pakeha definition, let alone understanding …

              Second: “The environmentalist Derrick Jensen claims the tragedy of the commons is used as propaganda for private ownership. He says it has been used by the political right wing to hasten the final enclosure of the “common resources” of third world and indigenous people worldwide, as a part of the Washington Consensus*.”

              * Often also known as the Chicago School of Economics or Arch-Neoliberalism …

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  4th February 2019

              @PZ, crap. Open your eyes.

        • Patu

           /  4th February 2019

          What the banks need to do HFD, is review their policy of not lending on relocatable homes/tiny houses.

  5. Finbaar Rustle

     /  4th February 2019

    100 mill will go no where among thousands of blocks of land. The first 50 mill will go toward admin. The next 40 toward feasibility studies. The first thing is to refuse the money. The second thing is to not use the land for any economic use. Just run a few sheep/cattle goats to mow the land . Erect buildings for retreats.. Raise crops only fr personal use.
    Just keep away from stupid economic ideas.
    Most farming is balanced on a knife edge or going to the wall.
    Waste of time will fail and European will be moaning about uneconomic Maori land.
    Unless you strike Gold or oil use the land as family, cultural learning and recreation.

    • Kitty Catkin

       /  4th February 2019

      With the Tainui settlement, a large amount went to a few families; I could name them, but won’t.

      Much went to a vanity building, an educational building that hadn’t had a student when I was last there and probably hasn’t had one since. It is an expensive monument to Robert Mahuta; I forget how many million it cost. It’s impressive, but a white elephant.

      The idea that Hopu Hopu camp would be a village failed when the tenants had their rent suddenly raised to market rents and moved out because they were too far from anything to want to pay the same rent as they would in a town where they’d have town conveniences.

  6. Gezza

     /  4th February 2019

    The entertainment this year at Waitangi could well be the best ever. The networks should consider doing a Waitangi special.
    … … … …
    The woman who threw a dildo at National Party’s Steven Joyce at Waitangi says she will attend this year’s commemorations despite being trespassed by police. Christchurch activist Josie Butler took to social media on Monday morning to say police had visited her home last week and banned her from attending celebrations at Waitangi.

    In a video on Facebook, Butler said she had been invited to speak this year about the benefits of protest and had recently discovered her great, great, great grandfather was a signatory of the treaty and had been the first person ever to speak on Waitangi.

    “I feel really hurt that that opportunity has been taken away from me without anyone even giving me a phone call first and having a yarn,” Butler said. Butler continued that she had emailed every member of the Waitangi board four days ago about the trespass notice, requesting the opportunity to speak about the decision. She said no one had responded or acknowledged her email.

    Butler said the “real kicker” of it all was that former National Party leader Don Brash had been invited to speak.

    “Don Brash, [a] person who completely opposes Te Tiriti Waitangi. Don Brash, the person who thinks the Waitangi Tribunal should be abolished. Don Brash, man who has been banned from universities because of his hate speech towards Māori.” “I think this is a really good example of where our race relations are at today. Decisions being made on our behalf, without us being allowed, even a voice in these decisions and when we shout often we are completely ignored.”

    Butler said she would still attend Waitangi despite the ban. “I will be exploring my ancestral land and I won’t be causing a fuss. I just want to go and see my marae and feel the wairua of the land.” She said no piece of paper was going to stop her having that right.
    https://www.stuff.co.nz/northland/110361288/woman-who-threw-sex-toy-at-waitangi-will-attend-despite-police-trespass

    I didn’t know the police could issue a trespass notice to somewhere just off their own bat?

    • Kitty Catkin

       /  4th February 2019

      Surely she can do all that at another time, she doesn’t have to go on Waitangi Day.

      • Gezza

         /  4th February 2019

        Well, sure, she could, and really I wish she would. But somebody has trespassed her from the place & I don’t get why, or how they can do that. Unless – as seems quite possible – we are not hearing the full story.

        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  4th February 2019

          Just another tuff enuff muff.

        • Patu

           /  4th February 2019

          You make a very good point G. Who trespassed her? The police only act if someone complains.

          • Patu

             /  4th February 2019

            And if she was paying attention when served with the trespass notice, she would know who it was. As you say, we are not getting the full story….

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  4th February 2019

          I suspect that we’re not hearing the full story from her !

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