Topics: Kapa Haka, Te Kei - Day 3, Te Matatini

Criticism from the stage at Te Matatini 2015

updated By Maiki Sherman
  • South Island

The voice of protest has been ringing out from the Te Matatini stage but a word of caution today, think before you fire.

Pou Temara says, "If what is being said is incorrect, you'll pay dearly.  The problem is you leave yourself open to those who will seek revenge on you."

Te Iti Kahurangi had Māori Television in its sights.

Their leader Kingi Kiriona says, "The essence of the haka is a challenge to find a way to ensure Māori Television is Māori in the way that it operates.  Mainstream media already view Māori issues in that light, we need to look at how we as Māori approach those situations."

Māori Television CEO Paora Maxwell says, "No, asking the hard questions is not a Māori custom, nor is it a Pākehā one, it is simply what is required."

Maiki Sherman asks Kingi Kiriona, "Part of you believes we shouldn't be following these sorts of stories?"

His response, "Yes, part of me does."
Maiki Sherman asks, "Isn't that turning a blind eye?"

"No it's not," says Kingi.  "There are Māori forums where those issues can be discussed and debated.  What I am saying is mainstream media already questions us, what is the problem with Māori highlighting the positives?"

Paora Maxwell says, "It's absolutely fine for groups to express their views but I don't agree with the criticism from Te Iti Kahurangi about Māori Television's coverage because most of what we do is positive, including the Te Matatini coverage which is being broadcast to the world."   

The cry of criticism isn't confined to the haka; this week, Donna Grant stated her piece backed by her rōpū.

As expected politicians were in the firing line, though the PM wasn't here to heed the call. 

But Labour leader Andrew Little was all ears, "We've got to deliver for Māori I know that."

Matatini proving to be the home of many faces and many views.