Ngāti Rēhia Leadership Engages with Act Party Leader to Advocate Hapū Interests and Values
On Friday, 15 December the Leader of the Act Party, David Seymour accepted an invitation from Kuia Nora Rameka and Kaumātua Kipa Munro to meet and discuss concerns regarding our hapū Ngāti Rēhia. The primary reason for meeting with the Minister was to present our Ngāti Rēhiatanga. It was critical for us to ensure that the Minister understood what it means to be a member of our hapū and the responsibilities and duties that come with belonging to that membership.
This wasn’t a meeting to discuss the Act Party policies specifically, nor was it an opportunity for the Minister to defend his policies, as we felt this is a wider Ngai Māori, hapū and iwi discussion. This meeting was to put the Minister on notice that the hapū of Ngāti Rēhia did not agree with the Act Party initiatives.
Following is the discussion that transpired at our meeting and a report provided to the Minister on our hapū activities:
“E te whanaunga, e David, tēnā koe.
Thank you for accepting our invitation to meet prior to the Christmas break.
The purpose of this booklet is to provide some key information regarding Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Rēhia, our hapū Ngāti Rēhia generally and to highlight a number of initiatives or programmes that we are currently undertaking. It is also my intention to provide this document as a summary of speaking points that we wish to discuss with you at our hui planned for Friday 15 December 2023.
TE WHAKAPAPA O NGĀTI RĒHIA ME TŌ MĀTOU WHAKAPONO KI Ā TĀTOU TIKANGA
Within this booklet you will see the pepeha of Ngāti Rēhia which identifies key areas and sites of significance, such as maunga, pā, awa, moana, marae and waka, which sit within the rohe (or traditional boundaries) of Ngāti Rēhia. As you will be aware, our pepeha, whakapapa and tikanga play significant roles in our understanding of our culture and identity; and connects us, as a people, to our environment, to our language and to our ancestors – of whom worked tirelessly to ensure we can stand proudly as uri of Ngāti Rēhia.
It is important we begin our discussions today recognising and celebrating this whakapapa and pepeha, one that we share as members of the same hapū and descendants of key rangatira within Northland.
Ngāti Rēhia upholds, maintain and promote our tikanga, our whakapapa and our reo, in everything that we do. It is the source of our mana and cannot be separated from who we are.
NGĀTI RĒHIA, HE WHAKAPUTANGA ME TE TIRITI O WAITANGI
Ngāti Rēhia believe in the assertions and affirmations made by the signatories to He Whakaputanga o Ngā Rangatira o Niu Tireni on the 28th of October 1835 and the agreement that was entered into by our rangatira when they signed Te Tiriti o Waitangi on the 6th of February 1840.
Ngāti Rēhia have been actively involved in a number of Waitangi Tribunal inquires and hearings and have provided evidence on our understanding of He Whakaputanga, Te Tiriti and the agreement that was entered into by both the rangatira who signed and the representatives of the Crown . We are clear in our understanding that those rangatira did not cede their sovereignty or rangatiratanga and that they envisaged a partnership wherein both te iwi Māori and Pākehā would prosper within these lands.
Ngāti Rēhia uphold that agreement every day in the mahi we do and strive to create that environment of mutual respect, shared power and partnership within the communities of the Kerikeri/Bay of Islands district. We believe this is what was envisaged by our tupuna in 1840.
NGĀ KAUPAPA E WHAKAHAEREHIA NEI E NGĀTI RĒHIA KIA MUTU AI NGĀ TAIMAHATANGA
While Ngāti Rēhia may be rich in culture and identity, our people are unfortunately still suffering from the impacts of colonisation and Crown actions following the signing of Te Tiriti o Waitangi and the Northern Wars. Our people are represented negatively in many aspects of our society, and this is a statistic that we want to change.
It is with that in mind and based on our belief in Te Tiriti o Waitangi and te ao Māori, that our Rūnanga was established to guide our people and provide opportunities with successful outcomes for our whānau, their tamariki and mokopuna. Every initiative, programme, contract, and opportunity we enter into is founded upon our desire to work collaboratively with our communities, with the local government and with Crown agencies in order to move forward together. We firmly believe that Aotearoa is a better place when we are working together towards positive outcomes, founded upon Te Tiriti o Waitangi.
The following is a list of some of those kaupapa Ngāti Rēhia lead in our various focus areas in housing, health, education, arts culture and heritage, environmental, Ngāti Rēhia/Crown relationships and social services, which we have highlighted in the remainder of this booklet. You will see that Ngāti Rēhia play a key role in leading these initiatives and in more than one instance, are in fact the first hapū paving the way for others to follow:
Housing & Education
- Kaumātua / Kuia Housing Development
- Papakainga Housing Development
- Community Housing Provider (CHP)
- Te Reo Māori, Tikanga and Arts qualifications at Te Pou o Manako
- Incredible Years Parenting Programme
- Alternative Education & Attendance
Health & Social Services
- Disaster Relief
- Education & Job Training
- Child & Family Assistance
- Kuia and Kaumatua Health Assistance
- Sustainable Housing/Homelessness
- Mātauranga Māori Rongoā
- Hauora Training & Development Initiatives
- Maramataka Mātauranga & Training
Arts, Culture & Heritage, Tourism
- Te Pūāwaitanga Sports Complex Waipapa
- Te Amo Pūtoro Kerikeri Sports Complex
- Kerikeri Reo Rua
- Te Ahurea
- Kororipo Heritage Park
- Kauri Sanctuary
Environmental Ngāti Rēhia/Crown Relationships
- Assisting developers and FNDC/NRC in blessings of whenua and events
- Freshwater Monitoring
- Cultural Impact assessment
- Kerikeri/Waipapa Spatial Planning
- Te Tiriti o Waitangi kaupapa and district inquiries
- High Court MACA Proceedings and Direct Engagement Process
- Transfer of Kororipo Pā
HEI WHAKAUTU I NGĀ KAUPAPA HERE A ACT
What is clear from the documents that have been released following the establishment of this new government, is that your current policies undermine the work your hapū and your Rūnanga has been doing for many years. These policies and proposed changes will stop any progress we have made and any achievements our tupuna and rangatira made in their lifetime. Ngāti Rēhia and the Rūnanga do not support these initiatives.
E te Minita, we want to celebrate your achievements and the position you will take as Deputy Prime Minister. We want to celebrate your whakapapa as Ngāti Rēhia and stand in support of one of our members who has achieved a position of mana within our government. However, we cannot do this if you continue to progress with the policies and proposed changes as set out by the Act party.
We hope you take on board our kōrero and the impacts it has on your hapū of Ngāti Rēhia and te iwi Māori as a whole.“