Rangatahi a core focus at National Iwi Chairs Forum

By James Perry

Te Atiawa o Te Waka-a-Māui are hosting 150 representatives from 70 iwi across the country at the National Iwi Chairs Forum in Picton.

Representatives will be welcomed onto Waikawa Marae this morning and the findings of a National Rangatahi Forum held yesterday will be presented to the Chairs to kick off the event.

Ngāti Kahungunu hosted the previous forum in Heretaunga less than two months ago.

Freshwater management, the collection and distribution of Māori data, concern over the distribution of Whānau Ora funding, climate change and the impact of the Ministry for Primary Industries standards around Manuka Honey are expected to be fleshed out further and presented to Crown representatives on Friday.

The Minister for Māori Development, Nanaia Mahuta is expected to attend the hui on Friday morning where she will be presented with the findings developed.

An initially bumpy start to the relationship between the Iwi Chairs Forum and Nanaia Mahuta as Minister immediately following the election appeared to have been mended following the hui in August with the Minister receiving congratulations for her progress in ensuring Iwi were given a voice that was heard and acknowledged accordingly.

Dame Naida Glavish, Tā Mark Solomon, Professor Makere Mutu, Mike Smith, Linda Tumahai, Dion Tuuta, Haami Piripi, Ngāhiwi Tomoana and Rahui Papa are some of the representatives attending the hui expected to present updates on progress around the issues raised in August.