Sunday, 8 November 2009


We have been in Hamilton this weekend - a world away from Wellington and two worlds away from the South Island and Ngai Tahu.

We have had time to take stock and we think we have set out to achieve what we wanted to do - get Ngai Tahu focusing on their leadership and the tribes performance and make people think and act on who they want to represent them - and we have already seen the signals , with the election of Wally Stone and Tahu Potiki, that the people want a change of direction.

We have come under fire for moderating the debate on various posts - its simply because both the supporters of Mark Solomon and his detractors have indulged in some personal mudslinging the likes of which we have never, ever seen before on any issue we have ever run on this blog.

We reckon that we have done a good job of stoking the fires of a very important issue for Ngai Tahu rank and file. We think that we were pretty well known for plain speaking on the Marae so we have taken that approach on this blog. We have done what we have done here on Ngai Tahu issues on Roarprawn, with the help of many from one end of the country to the other. We thank them. For many Ngai Tahu, Roarprawn is not something that ends up in your puku - it a noisy little fish that embeds in your brain and makes you think.

But now it is time for the focus to shift from the virtual marae we have created here to the real one.

It is now the turn of the people, face to face, to sort these issues through.

So until the Hui A Tau which is being held at Oraka Aparima Colac Bay Riverton, on the weekend of the 20-22nd of November is over, we wont mock, prod, slap, dig, cajole, criticise or praise anything or anyone in relation to the elections.

We think that this way everyone can take a breather and think very, very wisely about the best part they can play in the future of the tribe that will serve the best interests of us all.

That sort of talk is best done without heat in quiet rooms.

It's time for all the tribe to turn up to the Hui A Tau and voice their concerns and support for the people they want to lead the tribe.

It is time to take the business back into the House of Tahu for a while. There is going to have to be an orderly transition in leadership - as Ngai Tahu is not just important to its people, it has an important role to play in the South Island economy. Ngai Tahu can also join with other iwi to get the economies of scale required to advance new business ventures to benefit all Maori.

And for those who have contacted us and asked if we are interested in being involved in the elections down home in Awarua, Bluff. Yes and no. We have no interest in standing as a representative. We are fervent devotees of Ahi Kaa. That is - that those who are at home are the best to manage the home affairs. But maybe we will put our hands up to be on the panel to select the local delegate. We will consider that option in due course.

We walked away from active involvement in tribal affairs 10 years ago, when we moved to Wellington, after being heavily engaged in runanga, marae and runanga business and the titi committee. The only tribal business we ever really wanted to be actively involved in was the management of fisheries but that opportunity never came our way.

Many of the skills we learnt at home have stood us in good stead all these years.
We have run our own successful little business without a drop of financial support from anyone, so that has been pretty satisfying.

And its good to look back and see that a lot of what we help initiateback home has survived today. So we look back with some pride. And its those experiences and understanding that has kept us forever interested in tribal politics - albiet at a distance.

So to you , leaders and followers all - it is time to put aside the egos, the family disputes, the jealousies and for humility to reign and for The Table to serve up the feast of social and economic riches for all us to share.

So for now we will stay quiet and concentrate on other things.. Just for a while mind you, just for a while..


kehua said...

Looks to me like Tipene is going to wear that patu.

Richard Parata said...

Cannot fault your sentiments – Ngai Tahu settled and going forward- laudable. But just as I warmed you say –“ There is going to have to be an orderly transition in leadership” a presumption that there is to be change, how do you justify this? And you also say “But now it is time for the focus to shift from the virtual marae we have created here to the real one.”? – your “virtual” contribution started quite late in the NT debate, Sept 08, - look at for the real story. Your own, glowing, CV of ten years ago is good – but what have you been doing in the last nine years to contribute to Ngai Tahu wellbeing?
The contribution on your blog has been to demonise Mark Solomon without an ounce of reason. You are an accomplished and talented PR person who should be offering your services to your iwi. Me /We, thinks there is a high degree “We”, self promotion- perhaps you ought to climb down from the heady heights of Wellington’s hostelry’s, the name dropping and get back to the kitchens of Awarua where the gossip is never far from the truth – indeed in any other Ngai Tahu kitchen.

Anonymous said...

Kia ora BB

i am sorry to know that you will be holding back for a while. I enjoy your analysis and brave commentary about Ngai Tahu - our iwi.

Your courage to speak out and hold the leaders of the tribe accountable for their decisions and actions is inspiring!