Labour List MP
People who heckle speakers using te reo Maori do not represent our city, the Waiariki, or modern New Zealanders. All they do is make themselves shine.
It really highlighted how outdated that rudeness was, when The Guardian later heralded to the world Nanaia Mahuta is a ‘pioneering foreign Minister’ largely for bringing tikanga and an indigenous world view to the portfolio.
I am so proud of the recognition our tuahine Nanaia is getting, as part of a government committed to doing things differently. When I think of young wahine Maori watching Nanaia do the business, and stun the world – all while wearing a moko kauae – my eyes get misty from the inspiration.
I doubt that pride was felt by those in the room of the first story I mentioned, and for good reason.
Better yet, hearing te reo Maori will soon be a lot easier, with $42 million into Maori media - such as our own Moana FM – part of the record $1 billion budget to improve the wellbeing of Maori whanau.
It will create jobs, better recognise iwi radio and stride towards this government’s goal of having one million people speaking our taonga by 2040, including here in Tauranga.