Iwi radio stations receive a $12 million boost

By Te Ao Māori News

Māori Affairs Minister Dr Pita Sharples has announced there will be a $12 million boost over four years for iwi radio stations.

This will go towards the operational costs of the 21 stations currently funded by Te Māngai Pāho and to assess the feasibility of expanding the iwi radio network.

Dr Sharples acknowledged the efforts made by Iwi radio stations and says that "since its inception in the mid 1980s, iwi radio has played a critical role in making our reo available to whānau in their homes , in their cars and in a range of settings." 

He also believes that "with this new investment, we can expect to see more Māori language content and more quality programming support our whānau in their engagement with te reo."

Willie Jackson, chairman of The National Māori Radio Network, Te Whakaruruhau O Ngā Reo Irirangi Māori,  told Te Kāea today that “Some of our iwi radio stations struggle a great deal so this comes as great news." 

However, he says "we weren't surprised as it’s an election year, but we are thankful to the minister nonetheless."

The additional $12 mill increases the Governments total commitment to iwi radio to $13.7 million in operating funds per year.

Budget 2014 also provides an additional $1.5 million of operating funding over four years to support Te Māngai Pāho to archive historic Māori language programming.

These initiatives support Māori community development as well as Māori revitalisation efforts.