Hokianga protest sparks over oil exploration

By Heeni Brown

The people of Hokianga have turned out with a colourful flotilla to protest against oil giant Statoil's continued exploration of the seabed.

Residents are concerned about the potential impacts oil exploratory drilling could have on water quality and sea life.

According to Bronwyn Wikaira, "We want the government to see the hard-line stance we are taking today.”

Statoil has its eyes set on the Te Reinga Basin and has a six-year term to explore the seabed for oil in the region.  This protest follows a similar protest held in Ahipara last month bearing the same message.

The Northland community is seeking to build public support in order to pressure the government.

Only time will tell, if the Government is willing to listen.