Topic: Te Reo Māori

Māori Language strategy faces challenges

By Harata Brown

The Minister of Maori Affairs, as well as many advocates for Te Reo Māori within the Auckland district were welcomed on to Te Puea Marae today, for the final Māori Strategy Consultation Hui. 

However, a range of challenges were laid out, one in particular by a Māori Council Member, in regards to the section of the strategy which sees the establishment of a new entity, entitled Te Mātāwai.

Titewhai Harawira was not afraid to challenge the proposed change, she doesn't agree the Māori Council has no place within the Government's new proposed Māori Language Strategy.

She says," it's wrapped up with under guys with just Te reo, when there's a broad brush to get rid of the Maori Council and the Maori Woman's Welfare League."

Within the proposal, Te Mātāwai will assume ownership of Te Taura Whiri i Te Reo Māori & Te Māngai Pāho, and also undertake ownership functions with the Minister of Māori Affairs and the Minister of Finance in regard to the Māori Televison Service as well as negotiate purchase agreements with the Crown, for the provision of Māori Language programmes and services by these entities.

Pita Sharples says, "they are Reo Maori advocates, active in nurturing Te Reo."

Te Waihoroi Shortland says, "the Minister wants to return the ownership of Te Reo, within this strategy, to the people."

Te Ataarangi, will also play a role in the undertaking of Māori language programmes within the communities, through ‘Kainga Korerorero’ and a new proposed programme.

There will be 7 representatives from 7 proposed language regions, another 2 will be representatives from Reo & Kaupapa Māori Advocate groups for Te Mātāwai.

The main objective of the proposed strategy is to return ownership of Te Reo Māori to its people.

Submissions close for the proposed strategy on the 28th of February 2014.