19 May, 2011
Budget maintains momentum for Māori Affairs
Budget 2011 will ensure the Government maintains momentum with its Māori Affairs programmes, which are delivering encouraging results, Māori Affairs Minister Pita Sharples says.
“Within existing baselines, we have found $2 million to support Māori engagement with the constitutional review and $2 million to continue community-driven language revitalisation projects,” Dr Sharples says.
“The constitutional review is potentially the most important advance for Māori in a generation, because the role of the Treaty of Waitangi is a key part of the national discussion.
“Once we are agreed on the basis of our partnership, we can address issues with mutual respect, instead of feeling challenged. The constitutional review aims to help our nation unite around a very positive self-image.
“Our reallocation of funding to community-driven language projects was foreshadowed in the recent report ‘Te Reo Mauriora’, in which an independent panel of experts recommended redirecting resources to encourage families to speak Māori at home,” Dr Sharples says.
“In addition to Whanau Ora, new funding in the Māori Affairs budget of $250,000 will help settle a long-standing injustice over perpetually-leased lands around Taumarunui.
“This compensates the Karanga Te Kere landowners for not being included in earlier settlements of this difficult issue, which arose from 19th Century legislation that denied Māori owners control over their lands in perpetuity,” Dr Sharples says.