top of page
  • Te Huihui Tran

Māori & Pasifika News: Ngāti Toa Rangatira Opposes Fast-Track Bill, University of Otago Unveils New ikoa Māori and tohu, NZ Navy Combats Illegal Fishing in Fijian Waters

Words by Te Huihui o Matariki Chi Huy Tran (he/him) - Taranaki Tūturu, Te iwi o Maruwharanui, Ngāti Maniapoto

Subway Art Celebrates Local Heritage in Naenae

Wellington's Naenae subway, blessed by Te Āti Awa and Taranaki Whānui, has been officially opened. The upgraded subway features mahi toi Māori by local artists Len Hetet and Manukorihi Winiata. The designs tell the origin stories of the Waiwhetu and Te Awamutu rivers, as well as Te Ngaengae, the freshwater lake beneath Naenae. The subway aims to provide a safe and modern entry to the train station and improve pedestrian connections. It's great to see the community's input in creating public spaces that reflect their identity. 

Ngāti Toa Rangatira Opposes Fast-Track Bill 

Last Wednesday Ngāti Toa Rangatira, joined by allied iwi and supporters, marched in protest against the Fast-Track Approvals Bill, emphasising their commitment to safeguarding their land and resources. Te Rūnanga o Toa Rangatira's CEO, Helmut Modik, asserted their unwavering stance: "Ngāti Toa will not allow degradation of our whenua. This bill risks irreversible harm to ecosystems and biodiversity, disregarding Treaty rights and our obligation to uphold Te Tiriti o Waitangi." Te Pāti Māori echoed support, while nearly 27,000 submissions to Parliament underscored widespread concern. Committee chair David MacLeod acknowledged public interest, promising thorough consideration. Modik emphasised the importance of their protest, citing past harm to Te Awarua o Porirua Harbour as a cautionary tale.

Government Agrees to Auckland Water Infrastructure Borrowing Plan

In a significant move, the government has granted Auckland's water provider, Watercare, permission to secure borrowing for infrastructure independently, alleviating pressure on the Auckland Council's balance sheet. This decision comes alongside a revision in water rates, with a 7.2% annual increase for the next three years, instead of the initially projected 25.8%. Auckland Mayor Wayne Brown hailed the move, emphasising its alignment with the council's stance against the proposed three waters.

Royal New Zealand Navy Assists in Combating Illegal Fishing in Fiji's Waters

A 10-member Royal New Zealand Navy team has wrapped up a six-week mission targeting illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing in Fiji's Exclusive Economic Zone. Tasked with sweeping Fiji's waters for illicit activities, including poor crew welfare and pollution, the contingent collaborated with Fijian fishery officers. During the operation, they boarded 23 vessels, all found to be compliant with licensing terms, albeit with minor infractions in long-line fishing practices. The mission, conducted in partnership with the UK's Royal Navy vessel HMS Tamar, aimed to bolster enforcement in the region. Lieutenant Jack Walters noted the vital role of such efforts in safeguarding the prosperity of Pacific Island nations. This collaborative endeavour underscores the commitment to combat IUU fishing, crucial for preserving marine ecosystems and supporting local economies.

New Study in New Caledonia to Investigate Shark Presence and Behaviour

Following shark incidents last year, a new scientific study in New Caledonia's Southern Province aims to monitor tiger and bulldog shark movements. French Research Institute IRD will collaborate on the project, deploying transmitters in 200 sharks' stomachs for tracking. Additionally, environmental DNA testing will detect shark cells in seawater samples. The four-year study, costing approximately US$2 million, will map seasonal shark presence.

University of Otago Unveils New ikoa Māori and tohu

The University of Otago revealed its new Māori name, Ōtākou Whakaihu Waka, and a new logo, during a ceremony alongside Te Rūnanga o Ōtākou and Kāti Huirapa ki Puketeraki. The name signifies "A place of many firsts," echoing the legacy of Sir Peter Buck, the first Māori medical graduate. Inspired by the Ōtākou channel, the symbol represents knowledge exchange. Chancellor Stephen Higgs sees it as a step towards a Te Tiriti o Waitangi-led future. The new brand will feature in all communications, marking a shift towards inclusivity and connectivity.


bottom of page