Dennis Makalio: ‘Stop connecting abuse of women to the Mongrel Mob’

By Tumamao Harawira

 Dennis Makalio of the Mongrel Mob Rogue says it's wrong that the Wāhine Toa of the Mongrel Kingdom has put a claim into the Waitangi Tribunal.

The Wāhine Toa of the Kingdom in Waikato, claims colonialisation is directly responsible for the violence inflicted not only on women from the Mob but also Māori women in general.

However, Makalio thinks otherwise, saying, “If it's about the Mob and all that, at the end of the day, why are you wearing the perpetrators' bulldog, why are you tattooing their bulldog on their arms and we are supposed to be the perpetrators.”

It was Paula Ormsby of Ngā Wāhine Toa who submitted the claim, and Makalio says each to their own.

“The women in the kingdom have never been a part of the past but I mean I totally tautoko them, and what they want to do with their wāhine.”

According to Paula Ormsby, people don't understand what the claim is actually about.

Blaming colonialisation

“The claim was made on behalf of Wāhine Toa. However, it is also for priority whānau.”

And it isn't exclusively for the Mob.

“The priority whānau that we are talking about are described as being at the sharpest end of every socio-economic statistic and are therefore considered high priority for intervention from the state.”

Act leader David Seymour has long opposed these types of Treaty claims.

“Act has great sympathy for women and children trapped in gang violence. We understand how hard it is to get out of that. Where we have a difference is they are blaming colonialisation.”

“They want to blame things that happened 200 years ago for what the situation is today; the Act party always says what difference can we make in our own lives.”

Merit in claim

According to prominent wahine Merepeka Raukawa-Tait, there is validity in the Wāhine Toa claim.

“I think the claim definitely has merit. I mean any association with gangs has definitely stigmatised the wahine and their opportunity to access services that every other woman can access.”

“Certainly they have been stigmatised just because they are gang along with their families.”

According to Mongrel Kingdom president Ariki Paito, he doesn't have an issue with what people like Makalio think.

“If that's the way he leads his rohe, 'stay in your lane and don't meth around, you know what I'm saying'.”

Ormsby says although her chapter has seen the vitriol on social media, the Wāhine Toa will continue to push forward our case.”