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Prime Minister Ardern at Waitangi

Written By: - Date published: 2:34 pm, February 5th, 2018 - 182 comments
Categories: jacinda ardern, labour - Tags: ,

This is a new day for politics in New Zealand. A female Prime Minister has broken over a century of practise and is doing a main speech at Waitangi.

Even more: no drama occurred. Anywhere.

I cannot recall the last time any Prime Minister got a reception like this at Waitangi, or anywhere, in the mainstream media. No major protests, no conflict or rudeness, not even any petty rules to negotiate on the day.

They were greeted with drama.

The Prime Minister delivered the drama right back with good, honest politics.

The results were warmly received by all.

Nothing went wrong, everything was positive, there were a number of suitably stirring moments … and the Prime Minister implored all present to hold her government to account on what Maori see has been delivered for them.

Who knows how long this will last. But Prime Minister Ardern is leaving the media spellbound, and all New Zealand watching, listening, and reading it are in the best place in my lifetime to prepare for Waitangi Day itself. I honestly did not think I would live to see this. But I have.

182 comments on “Prime Minister Ardern at Waitangi ”

  1. red-blooded 1

    Well, the decision to spend 5 days at Waitangi was a masterstroke. I also think it was genuine – more than a political stunt. And so people are finally feeling respected and cared about and like they don’t have to shout.

  2. Booker 2

    This is what it’s like to have a PM you can be proud of.

  3. Rosemary McDonald 3

    Can someone tell me why the Prime Minister’s partner played such a prominent role in what is a political event?

    AFAIK, Gaylord didn’t stand in the election.

    I cannot remember ever seeing this before.

    Ardern seems to be making the right kind of noises in the most opportune places but I’m still not convinced that her Labour Party is appreciably different from Helen Clark’s.

    • Ad 3.1

      Do you recall the last time Helen Clark went as Prime Minister to Waitangi?

      That is appreciably different to Prime Minister Ardern.

      • Rosemary McDonald 3.1.1

        I am not going to buy into the cult of personality thing that’s swirling around Ardern at the moment. She has enough fans, and with the professional media support she no doubt enjoys via her seemingly ever present partner there will be no trouble keeping them.

        Tell folk what careful research has told you they want to hear, and deliver that in a manner your PR team has assessed will be most effective and you’ll get the most cynical of groups eating from your hand.

        Maybe she is a genuine person and believes what she says, but she is not the Party and she is not the Government.

        I’ll start to applaud when I see meaningful change.

        I will not be distracted from holding this government to account by some carefully orchestrated publicity event.

        I am seriously considering an “I’m Immune from Jacindamania” t-shirt.

      • alwyn 3.1.2

        Pray tell us since you are obviously dying to let us into the news.
        What happened the last time Clark went to Waitangi as Prime minister?

    • mickysavage 3.2

      Im not sure his role was that significant. He did pick up the gift left by the welcoming party but apart from that I did not see that he was given any prominence.

      • Tracey 3.2.1

        Did Bronagh go to Waitangi? And Peter Davis?

        • Rosemary McDonald

          “Did Bronagh go to Waitangi? And Peter Davis?”

          Find me a pic or two?

          I don’t recall them being in any…

          • Delia

            JK did not make it, neither did Bill, to scared to face up to the appalling homelessness they had left many Maori in over nine years. Ardern is what she is, you can call it fake, please yourself Rosemary. For me the main thing is finally we have a day we can be proud of.

          • The Pink Postman

            Bronagh never went anywhere with Key .Makes me wonder whether their marriage was as happy as the Tories keep telling us it was.

      • Anne 3.2.2

        We’re used to seeing the PM’s wives walking beside their spouses and given a prominent position from which to view proceedings so why not the husband/partner.

        • Rosemary McDonald

          “We’re used to seeing the PM’s wives walking beside their spouses and given a prominent position from which to view proceedings so why not the husband/partner”

          Are we?

          I’d need some evidence. So, I haven’t watched telly since…2012 or so, so perhaps Key’s wife was at his side at political events….other than election night.

          • Reality

            Sorry you are feeling so negative at Jacinda’s partner’s presence at Waitangi. Waitangi is not just for politicians so if she wanted him there, why should he not be there? Rather mean minded to think otherwise really.

            • Rosemary McDonald

              “Sorry you are feeling so negative at Jacinda’s partner’s presence at Waitangi. ”

              I just asked why he got to be front and centre for the powhiri and wero when I don’t recall ever seeing any other PM’s spouse/partner in such a role.

              Is this new?

              Did I miss Clark’s husband picking up the green?

          • red-blooded

            This is a pretty petty issue to be so focused on, Rosemary. Perhaps we should note that this PM is at Waitangi for 5 days, rather than for an morning. I don’t see it as surprising that the partner of the PM should accompany them when they are staying away from home for an extended time.

            • Rosemary McDonald

              “This is a pretty petty issue to be so focused on, Rosemary.”

              To you it might be.

              To me, it appears that the whole crappy media generated “First Family” thing has gone a step too far.

              Gayford was there as a spouse/partner, not as a member of the Labour Party or Caucus.

              Unless he was elected without me knowing, he should have had no official role.

              I have no problem whatsoever at him being there…in fact…I have been sending him telepathic messages to sit Jacinda down and give her feet a rub. That’s his role…not as a stand in for the Leader of the Labour Party….that’s what the Deputy is for.

              • Louis

                “I have been sending him telepathic messages to sit Jacinda down and give her feet a rub. That’s his role…”


                • Rosemary McDonald

                  As her partner, and the father of her child this would be a very appropriate and incredibly supportive thing for him to do. And yes, being supportive as her life partner but NOT as a political colleague.

                  And ‘giving her feet a rub’ was kinda metaphorical.

              • red-blooded

                What “prominent role”? The DP (Peters) was here and spoke, ditto the Labour deputy (Davis). Gayford was simply there. Big deal.

                • Rosemary McDonald

                  “Gayford was simply there.”

                  No. He wasn’t just “simply there.” Catch up red-blooded.

                  Go back to the start and read your way through. Not sure how you can comment when you clearly didn’t read my original comment.

                  Or are you just going on the attack simply because it looks like someone has exercised their right of free speech and questioned what they see as at the very least a breech of protocol and at the worst the setting of a dangerous precedent.

                  rah, rah, rah

                  • red-blooded

                    Actually, I have read the entire thread, and commented earlier, too.

                    What was it in my comment that you saw as an attack? I simply pointed out that the people you thought should have been playing a significant role did in fact do that. Gayford did one thing – pick up the wero (which as I understand it had been prearranged, and was done on behalf of Ardern). I get it that you don’t like the male-only aspects of this kind cultural protocol (neither do I, as it happens) but neither you nor I get to decide this. As I understand it, he was asked by Ngāpuhi to do this. I’m afraid I can’t remember where I read this, and don’t really want to go searching for it, as I don’t see it as anywhere near as important as you seem to.

                    There were lots more important things to notice and appreciate about the events at Waitangi this year.

                    • Rosemary McDonald

                      “As I understand it, he was asked by Ngāpuhi to do this. I’m afraid I can’t remember where I read this, and don’t really want to go searching for it, as I don’t see it as anywhere near as important as you seem to.”

                      So, you are happy with a non democratically elected representative to act on behalf of the leader of the Labour Party at an official and highly political event?

                      With all due respect to the hosts, they do not decide who represents an elected Leader….the electorate does.

                      Because, democracy.

                      And it is a big deal.

                    • veutoviper

                      I too have read the entire thread, red-blooded. As you say, Gayford picked up the wero and this is all he did. Like you, I read or heard on radio/video that this was prearranged and he was very nervous beforehand. But I have read and heard/seen masses over the last few days and am not about to spend hours trawling for evidence of this prearrangement.

                      However, there is no way Clarke just did this of his own accord without it being fully agreed beforehand – or proposed – by the parties involved in organising the powhiri (including the challenge) – ie the Waitangi National Trust and the Coalition Govt Maori MPs.

                      The PM has been accompanied throughout her five days up at Waitangi by a large contingent of coalition Government MPS – including eight people with very significant connections to Northland Maori (Nga Puni and/or Ngati Manu):

                      Winston Peters, Deputy PM
                      Shane Jones, NZF and Minister
                      Kelvin Davis Labour Party Deputy Leader and Minister
                      Nanaia Mahuta – Labour MP
                      Peeni Henare – Labour MP; former member of the WNT
                      Rino Terakatene – Labour MP; current Govt member of WNT
                      Willow-Jean Prime – Labour MP
                      Willie Jackson – Labour MP and Minister

                      Peeni Henare in particular has been advising the PM (and Clarke Gayford) on protocol etc.

                      So if these people and the WRT proposed and/or agreed to Gayford picking up the wero, then IMO it is a no contest situation in respect of experience and rights to make this decision and it really is not up to any of the rest of us to question this decision.

                      Whether Gayford did so as the PM’s partner or in place of her as Leader of the Labour Party is a red herring – and does not seem to have been a matter of concern for any of the Maori MPs or the WRT. If it was, then presumably Gayford would not have been allowed to do the pick up.

                      As you say, “There were lots more important things to notice and appreciate about the events at Waitangi this year.”

                      IMO, it has been a turning point on many fronts – including seeing our PM and MPs from all three coalition parties serving breakfast to the masses.

                    • veutoviper

                      Ooops – Ngapuhi not Nga Puni.

                    • Louis

                      +100 Veutoviper, great post. Yep heard that too, Clarke Gayford was invited. Posted a link yesterday on Penni Henare’s guiding role.

    • JanM 3.3

      Because he’s whanau?

      • Louis 3.3.1

        Indeed. I recall Bill’s wife Mary seemed to become a bit of fixture, even appeared with Bill and his ministers at a news interview, the media even asked her a question like she was part of his caucus.

    • Kevin 3.4

      Who’s Gaylord?

      • alwyn 3.4.1

        Oscar Wilde’s friend is probably the most famous.
        Sorry. I just couldn’t resist it.

      • Psycho Milt 3.4.2

        Who’s Gaylord?

        Clarke Gayford, the PM’s partner. “Gaylord” is a derogatory term for him that I’ve seen in use on Kiwiblog comments threads. I hope to fuck its use here was a typo…

        • Rosemary McDonald

          It was. A Typo, didn’t know any different, knew it was Gaysomething.

          My celebrity knowledge is zilch.

          I shall take myself off and self flagellate.

          • Louis

            It would have been easy to check if you weren’t sure Rosemary

            • Rosemary McDonald

              “It would have been easy to check if you weren’t sure Rosemary”

              Then I wouldn’t have to go and beat myself for my sins…

              • Carolyn_Nth

                Actually I thought Gaylord was intentional. I’m not into the celebrity PM thing, either, so may need the honorary celebrity entitlement name at a future date. Thanks.

                However, I do think Ardern has front footed well at Waitangi, and set a new precedent – maybe partly with the help of Peters and Shane Jones, but also for spending 5 days at Waitangi.

                I have heard spending time on face-to-face relationships is important to Māori.

                I expect some good things from this government, but not expecting a shift from the neoliberal consensus – e.g. TPPA by any other name.

          • Psycho Milt

            Typos afflict all of us, but perhaps it would make sense to at least learn the name of someone you’re going to accuse of playing an inappropriate role in the country’s politics.

            • Rosemary McDonald

              “….you’re going to accuse of playing an inappropriate role in the country’s politics.”

              Goodness me. All I asked was “…is it normal protocol for the PM’s other half to have this level of involvement in highly political events?”

              And I still haven’t got an answer.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                “Normal protocol”? Perhaps not, and maybe it’s appropriate to ask what the value of “normal protocol” is, considering the “normal” results.

              • Goodness me. All I asked was “…is it normal protocol for the PM’s other half to have this level of involvement in highly political events?”

                Really? I think my interpretation of the meaning of your comment 3 was pretty much on the mark considering this later statement:

                It is not acceptable, in my opinion, for him to perform this role. He is, politically speaking, a complete nobody.

              • adam

                Chin up Rosemary McDonald, you got attacked by the usual suspects.

                Expect more of the same in the future.

                As you questioned liberalism and the cult of personality. My guess, you’ve been purged.

                • Rosemary McDonald

                  Thanks adam.

                  I guess we’ll have to wait another three years to get even close to a government with the gonads to throw off the yoke of neo-liberalism.

                  The warning signs were all there too…no CGT, sign the TPPA, no rent freeze before handing out extra $$$ which are going directly into the pockets of greedy landlords….sigh.

                  At least the horses will continue to graze without fear.

                • Delia

                  Yeah well it took awhile but we all got purged of the cult of John Key.

                  • adam

                    We just swapped cult leaders.

                    • greywarshark

                      Why so sour Adam can you try restraint on that along the lines if you haven’t an idea, or something positive to say about general behaviour, then don’t say anything.

                    • adam

                      The positivity brigade is in the house.

                      Like the polite, I’ve been offended , shut up and don’t offend me again from greywarshark.

                      Sorry not a labour party hack, so I’ll call it how I see it. It’s just the same cult of personality bs we been living with for some time now, just becasue it’s a nice soft pink doesn’t change the stench.

                    • Molly

                      I’m feeling the love too Adam.

                      Just surprised at the level of dismissal given to Rosemary’s valid and honest query. Not what I expected.

                    • Rosemary McDonald

                      “I’m feeling the love too…. ”

                      If I were not distracted with holding the paw of my very old cat while he slowly (but peacefully) shuffles off this mortal coil I might take it all very personally and flounce!

                      It is going to be a very interesting couple of years.

                      I just hope that the joy germs bounce when the (seemingly) inevitable fall comes.

                    • greywarshark

                      Sorry Adam
                      I am not drawn to your cult of anti-personality so don’t try to muddy the waters. I am interested in having better politicians and at present they seem to be Labour. I find it unsatisfactory to see people pretending to be pure and focussed dissing Labour before they have had time to advance their policies. You are appearing to be a troll rather than a brave, outspoken seeker of truth.

                    • Molly

                      Sorry to read that you are losing a friend today Rosemary. Hope they have a peaceful return home.

                      I’m heading to the garden to wage war on the kikuyu. See you in the funny pages…

                    • adam

                      Thanks for the apology greywarshark, but you seem to have stopped short at offering a real one.

                      Instead you went all inamorato for liberalism.

                      Some like socialism rather than this capitalist swill we being offered – so when labour pull their collective bits and bobs out of economic liberalism, I’ll stop with the criticism.

                      In the meantime, please feel offended by what I say. You seem to need it.

      • chris73 3.4.3

        Hopefully not too late for this to drop in but if you’re asking who Gaylord is then you haven’t watched this:


    • Jess NZ 3.5

      Grumpy red herring. Her Labour Party doesn’t have to prove itself to be different to make this an historic achievement in itself.
      Usually the Government experience at Waitangi is, shall we say, awkward. Congratulations to Ardern and all those who made it different this year (including, yes, why not? her partner).

    • Louis 3.6

      But was it just a political event? This government is about inclusion and I dont see the problem with PM Jacinda Ardern’s partner being part of it. It feels natural. I thought the caption under a photo that said the following was significant. “Clarke Gayford is welcomed onto the Treaty grounds under the care and guidance of Government Minister Peeni Henare”


      After the dawn service tomorrow, PM Jacinda and colleagues are going to put on a big breakfast for the public and I don’t recall any other PM/government doing that before either.

    • Ankerrawshark 3.7

      Maybe Clark played a significant role because Maori value Whanau

      What’s your problem with him being there? Just curious

      • Rosemary McDonald 3.7.1


        Gayford stepped forward to pick up the wero…the others doing the same that I happened to see, were Winston Peters and James Shaw as the leaders of their respective Parties.

        Gayford performed this highly significant act as what exactly?

        If the PM is forbidden to perform this act…the picking up of the wero…because she lacks the required genitalia then surely her Deputy should have stepped forward.

        Gayford, and I’m sure he’s a perfectly nice chap and all that, was there only to accompany his partner. He has no other significance.

        And imagine if the PM had failed to get permission to speak….would it have been acceptable for Gayford to do it for her?

        • Jenny Kirk

          Winston Peters picked up the wero as Leader of NZ First, James Shaw picked up the were as Leader of the Green Party, Clarke Gayford picked up the wero on behalf of the Leader of the NZ Labour Party. Clarke has been with the PM throughout her visit to Waitangi and has been warmly welcomed as part of the PM’s team and whanau wherever they have gone.

          This Labour-led government is doing things differently. They’re trying to be inclusive with people (and that includes their own people).

          For a clear picture of what went on at Waitangi today, you need go no further than RadioNZ’s report. It is accurate. I was there. This is what Jacinda said:


          • Rosemary McDonald

            “Clarke Gayford picked up the wero on behalf of the Leader of the NZ Labour Party. ”

            Thank you Jenny Kirk for a straight answer.

            It is not acceptable, in my opinion, for him to perform this role. He is, politically speaking, a complete nobody. That’s why there are Deputy Leaders.

            I can only imagine the shit storm had the spouse /partner of a National/Act/Maori Party leader, or even a Minister or MP had done such a thing.

            And rightly so.

            • Reality

              “A complete nobody” – how unpleasant to refer to the PM’s partner in such terms. Perhaps family members are being treated more inclusively now, which is a good thing. Hence the bbq tomorrow where ministers will be in charge of cooking. How about a more empathetic attitude!

              • Rosemary McDonald

                “A complete nobody”

                What I wrote was…”He is, politically speaking, a complete nobody. ”

                Now, tell me when exactly he stood for political office?

                • Bastables

                  Can you tell us where your iron clad knowledge of tikanga stems from? Perhaps which Iwi/Hapu/Organsation you are currently Kuia/Kaumatua for, exactly?

                  Because I can see a number of Kuia behind the PM not raising a objection at all.

            • Bastables

              Can you please state where your knowledge of tikanga springs from Mcdonald?

              I’m very interested in where you draw that a deputy Party leader is to accept the wero on behalf of a PM.

            • alwyn

              I hope he doesn’t get the crap thrown at him that the Key family got.
              When Bronagh went to things like the Commonwealth Head of Government meetings I saw on some of the left wing blogs complaints and demands to know why the taxpayer was paying for her travel.
              Key had the perfect answer of course. They weren’t paying. He was.
              I shouldn’t have been necessary though that he should have to justify it..
              I hope that the same sort of abuse doesn’t hit Ardern and her partner.
              On the other hand I hope she discourages the practice of referring to them as the First Couple. It really isn’t a New Zealand practice and I would hate to see it become one.

            • Molly

              Coming onto this thread late in the day Rosemary, but understand and agree with you on the significance of the picking up of the wero, and the lack of awareness that this would have been a role for a senior male from the Labour Party.

              Nothing against Clarke Gayford, but this is a formal process with defined roles, and as a measure of respect, that role should have been performed by an MP at least, preferably one versed in tikanga.

            • Jenny Kirk

              Mmmm. But this is Waitangi, and these people doing the Challenge were Maori, and they didn’t object to Clarke picking up the Wero. And Labour is trying to make Clarke welcome in a situation he wasn’t expecting to be in, and frankly – as a Labour supporter I didn’t see anything wrong with that.
              Maybe Labour people do not rigidly hold to protocols which are so important to some. There have been a number of differences this year, on this visit to Waitangi. Clarke picking up the wero was just one of them.

              • Molly

                Mmm. In some parts of Maaoridom it is not considered good hospitality to point out to manuhiri any failures of protocol. LBH here, the chances of most visiting politicians understanding and following tikanga, is fairly low. Just because they have not made a fuss, does not mean that the action was appropriate.

                “Maybe Labour people do not rigidly hold to protocols which are so important to some.”
                This falls along the lines of disrespecting the hosts. Just because it is easier to do so.

                It doesn’t make it right, and I find the excuses and casual dismissals on this thread make me agree with Rosemary more and more on this issue.

            • Venezia

              Jacinda is taking advice from her Maori caucus. There are at least five with tribal links to the north. I would guess they were likely to have included her partner in the protocols.

              • Molly

                Politicians – whether Pakeha or Maaori – are most likely going to play the populist card, regardless of protocol. That isn’t a good benchmark to set the standards by.

                The casual dismissals on this thread are tiring to read.

                Rosemary made a good point, and has had to trawl through these responses to reiterate it, because all the replies don’t relate to the protocol or appropriateness of the gesture – they just expound how it is “alright” and “times are different”.

                Sounds too much like cheerleading to me, and not enough like considered responses.

                • Carolyn_Nth

                  Yep. Agree, Molly.

                  I think Rosemary asked some valid questions. I haven’t seen any explanation from Maori – part from Marama Fox, who politely criticised the fact that pakeha get special concessions, while Maori women still take a back seat in many marae powhiri and rituals – with the caveat that if the local iwi agreed with Ardern speaking, that’s cool.

                  Or any explanation as to why Gayford picked up the wero and not a high ranking Labour Minister.

                  And I find the uncritical cheerleading a bit of a turn-off.

                  • Rosemary McDonald

                    “And I find the uncritical cheerleading a bit of a turn-off.”

                    I thought it was just grumpy, cynical old me. 🙂

                • Louis

                  “Maaori” ? typo? you have repeatedly made that error Molly.

                  • Molly

                    Fat Finger Syndrome when I’m on the tablet. Have the shortcut to the macron when I’m on the computer so it’s easier to use the form – Māori. On the very slow tablet, I’m reduced to the other acceptable form for the long vowel sound – Maaori.

                    The error is yours in thinking it was not deliberate. Should also have written Paakehaa (Pākehā) to be consistent, but still only learning Te Reo at the most basic level, and haven’t sorted all the long vowel/short vowels out as yet. (Just looked Pākehā up to check, as mentioned before, laziness rules when on the tablet.)

                    Māori – when learning Te Reo – is obviously one of the starter words, so easy to get right. 🙂

                  • mauī

                    No, it’s correct. It’s the original way Māori was spelled before macrons were used, highlighting the prolonged vowel sound. A lot of old texts use it.

      • JanM 3.7.2

        Exactly! I did mention it back there but perhaps she needs it spelt out. I’m curious too

        • Rosemary McDonald

          “Exactly! I did mention it back there but perhaps she needs it spelt out. I’m curious too”

          Okay, I’m trying to figure this out. Is the ‘she’ you’re referring to me? If so, what is it that I need spelt out?

          • Jenny Kirk

            Maybe the people querying Clarke picking up the wero need to reflect on how much they know about Maori tikanga, and to realise that there was great rejoicing at Waitangi because Jacinda is hapu, and that the Maori challengers accepted both Jacinda and Clarke as whanau, and were happy for Clarke to pick up the wero.
            So why should this be a problem for ignorant Pakeha ? Its not their scene.

            • Rosemary McDonald

              “So why should this be a problem for ignorant Pakeha ? ”


              “Ignorant”, and according to Sanctuary affected by “… the green eyed monster of spectacular female envy” at 5.3, way to go Labour stalwarts with lighting the flame of unity.

              Is this how it is going to play out is it over the next three years?

              Express concern, or god forbid criticise, and risk getting burned?

              So new to Government and already behaving like the Previous Incumbents.


    • Cinny 3.8

      Re Clarke & Jacinda… Maybe it’s as simple as a man looking after the women who is carrying his child?

      Wanting to be with her when he can, protect her, look after her…. human nature and all of that, especially for a first time dad whose lady is a PM.

      Probably see a lot more of him towards the end of her third trimester. He’s a good man.

  4. Tracey 4

    If you go to stuff and herald online you will see the contempt they hold for this day and this awesome speech. Key woukd be headlining with multiple stories. We know this cos of google

    • Ed 4.1

      Counted 15 stories as I scrolled down on Stuff and still nothing on the Prime Minister at Waitangi.
      A house crawling with ants is number 6 and an American sports event number 3.

      The bias is overt. Actually the word overt understates the level of bias the msm has.

      • red-blooded 4.1.1

        It’s there now – “PM makes history at Waitangi” – posted at 4.45. Only ranked 5th, though.

      • Jenny Kirk 4.1.2

        And TV3 News coverage was poor as well, Ed. 20 minutes in, after the ad break, and a cynical presenter and a poorly researched reporter. Just lousy.

        TV1 , Kataea, and RadioNZ showed TV3 how to do it properly. And – incidentally – very good coverage in the Northern Advocate where it matters.

    • Louis 4.2

      Yep and the comments from disgruntled National supporters are pretty vile and nasty too.

  5. patricia bremner 5

    What part of our comments make you think this is a cult?

    It is not a craze, or fashionable at all. Neither is it blind admiration.

    Many of us are pleased with how the P.M. is doing at present, and are happy to say so.

    Many of us worked and donated to get this coalition government in place of John Key’s /Bill English one, so I am saddened someone on the “left” feels so distainful so early.

    • Ad 5.1

      Best shift this one to addressing to Rosemary.

    • patricia bremner 5.2

      Yes, I did press Reply, but took too long I think.

    • Rosemary McDonald 5.3

      “Many of us worked and donated to get this coalition government in place of John Key’s /Bill English one, so I am saddened someone on the “left” feels so distainful so early.”

      Good on you for putting in the time and the dollars to increase the Labour/Green/NZF vote. So you’re invested, I get that.

      What I don’t get it where this faith in the Labour Party comes from, regardless who is Leader…when the last Labour Government was way less than ‘left’. They did an excellent job of smoothing the path for National/Act/Maori Party, who were truly from hell, but at least they were devils undisguised.

      Until I see results, not words, its just another talking head trying to garner votes or stay in power.

      • Jenny Kirk 5.3.1

        You might have to wait a little while, Rosemary, to see results. Undoing the work of the last 30 years of neo-liberalism will take some time.

        But it is starting to happen.

        And as Jacinda said today – things need to change (ie attitudes towards other people esp Maori) and change cannot happen by one person alone, she needs the support of everyone to make those changes happen – so that Maori feel as if they’re in a proper partnership with Pakeha – as they expected to be when the Treaty of Waitangi was signed.

        • Kat

          Well Rosemary, I will say again that Jacinda Ardern could be historically even more popular and loved within Labour ranks as Michael Savage.

          Thats a big statement and I stand by it. Be prepared to be very surprised.

          • Louis

            Funny you should say that Kat, I said something similar along those lines to a friend earlier today.

            • Kat

              Louis, I have had the longevity to witness a few Labour PM’s and not since Norm Kirk has anyone ignited the flame of hope and unity such as Jacinda Ardern. It is early days yet but that rebel Mr Jones was very apt when he said in reference to Jacinda that “something very special has been uncorked”.

              • Rosemary McDonald

                “… ignited the flame of hope and unity such as Jacinda Ardern. ”

                • Louis

                  No one is saying she is a messiah, but there’s no denying that PM Jacinda has ignited the flame of hope and unity.

                  • Carolyn_Nth

                    Not for all of us.

                    Ardern reminds me more of Bill Clinton or Tony Blair than Michael Savage or Norman Kirk.

                    Clinton and Blair were popular generally and with their country’s centre lefties, mainly because they came across well in person and via the media. They promised change from Regan/Thatcher, talked about reducing equality in an inspirational way…. but really were too aligned with the status quo. They softened neoliberalism in some ways, but ultimately just held back the tide a bit.

                    The NZ Savage government started off by implementing radical policies – state housing, social security, etc.

                    In contrast, the start of the Ardern government has been some \what timid, while promising great change.

                    I have yet to be convinced.

                    • Ardern reminds me more of Bill Clinton or Tony Blair than Michael Savage or Norman Kirk.

                      Really? Both Blair and Clinton had that smooth-talking salesman kind of charm that Key had (not that Key was in the same league, but NZ is a pretty unsophisticated place), the kind of charm that automatically puts you on alert for what they’re trying to sell you. Ardern doesn’t have even a hint of that about her.

                    • Carolyn_Nth

                      Psycho, I agree Ardern does not have a slick, superficial salesman style. However, she is good a selling the policies and practices of the centrists, conservatives (Peters) and neoliberals who she has aligned herself with (mainly Robertson and Parker).

                      And the policies and practices are more third way than Savage and Kirk, pre-working class, pro-social security Savage and Kirk.

                      Whether or not Ardern will cut lose from those influences in the long run, is an open question.

                • Sanctuary

                  I don’t know about igniting the flame of hope and unity, but the green eyed monster of spectacular female envy is certainly burning bright here.

                  • Carolyn_Nth

                    Please, do not use a misogynist stereotype to argue against arguments of political policy and practice.

                    • greywarshark

                      If you do want to support women’s endeavours carolyn-nth, please give your Jacinda criticising a rest, say for 2 months, and then review. Because you do seem to have it in for her at present.

                    • Carolyn_Nth

                      What a strange comment, greywarshark @ 3.02pm. Are you having a bad day?

                      You haven’t made any attempt to respond to any of the substance I’ve included in comments – and have brought feminism into a discussion where it wasn’t part of it – so looks a bit like a thread derail.

                      I am critical of the Ardern government – more of Parker and Robertson than Ardern. I have given Ardern some benefit of the doubt, and have stated that I hope she will eventually break with the third wayers and centrists she is aligned with.

                      The TPPA (as others have stated in this discussion), and luke warm policies on rental housing are a concern.

                      However, in this discussion, my first comment was positive about Ardern at Waitangi and I stated that I think there will be some good things done by this government. So your pontificating about me is wide of the mark here.

                      However, I don’t see the government so far as being a break from the neoliberal consensus we desperately need – as do some (possibly many) others.

                      So, you don’t like my political position? That’s no reason to try to silence/censor me – albeit in a rather futile way.

                      And, above all, I am not the person in this discussion who has been most critical of Ardern – so strange that you’ve singled me out.

                      Hope you have a good sleep tonight and have a better day tomorrow.

                    • Carolyn_Nth

                      Feminism is part of the whole discussion here, but not something I was arguing about.

                    • greywarshark

                      carolyn nth
                      It was you that referred to misogynist stereotype at 9.27am .
                      That brought gender into it in a particular way. My mentioning women’s endeavours does not link to feminism which has developed into a cult, separate from the ordinary concerns of women in today’s society.

                  • Rosemary McDonald

                    Really, Sanctuary? Whoever you are. Hiding behind a pseudonym to make misogynistic comments?


                  • veutoviper

                    Well said.

                    I am sad at Rosemary’s views on our new PM and her partner etc as I have strong empathy and respect for what I know of her circumstances and ongoing battle for people with disabilities.

                    But who participated in the ceremonial part of the activities over the last few days at Waitangi and the other venues was up to the local kuia and kaumatua – not up to Rosemary or others of us as observers and non-participants.

                    I was in fact really pleased to see Clarke Gayford, as our PM’s partner and soon-to-be full time carer of their baby, participating in the ceremony yesterday – and not just being treated as some kind of appendage to the rest of the participants.

                    Obviously this was with the agreement or invitation of the local kuia and kaumatua. A number of these people also made direct mention of Clarke in their speeches as part of the powhiri – although in Maori and beyond my current te reo Maori skills.

                    • Molly

                      Don’t be sad at Rosemary’s views. I’m not. I think she made a valid point, and one that has been ignored all the way through this thread.

                      If there has been an agreed change in protocol, then that is fine as regards that issue of respect towards the hosts. But her point about an unelected person – acting on behalf of the Labour Party – is still valid.

                      I will join in the jubilation of others when the consideration of ToW, and the impact it has had on Maaori is comprehensively and effectively addressed in policy and legislation. If this is the beginning, then great. But there have been many false starts with Maaori, and I’m happy to wait to see if there is any reason to start with the party poppers. The issue regarding ToW and the revised TPPA, doesn’t help matters.

                    • Rosemary McDonald

                      “Well said.”

                      …what, that my views on the inappropriateness of the spouse/partner of an democratically elected PM standing in for her at an official and highly politically charged function are born from…” the green eyed monster of spectacular female envy .”?

                  • Molly

                    ” but the green eyed monster of spectacular female envy is certainly burning bright here.”
                    Sanctuary – thought you were better than this.

                  • Louis

                    Lol Indeed it is Sanctuary.

              • Louis

                Indeed, Kat.

                • Sanctuary

                  If the hat fits, I’ll call it and to hell with whatever labels you want to try and pin on me.

                  • Louis

                    Nice comeback. Presume that is in response to Rosemary.

                  • Rosemary McDonald

                    “If the hat fits, ”

                    Come on Sanctuary, do better than throwaway semi sentences and tell us how questioning the appropriateness on an unelected person standing in for a Leader of a Political Party equates to “the green eyed monster of spectacular female envy “.

                    Or were you just attacking the women asking the question?

                    Coward. I stand by that, btw. I choose to comment transparently, without hiding behind a false name. I’ll stand by what I say.

                    I have no problem with folk using pseudonyms providing they don’t hide behind them to make highly offensive character attacks.

          • mary_a

            Spot on there Kat ( … I’m finding Jacinda hovering somewhere between Michael Savage and Norman Kirk, two PMs with a genuine affection and respect for the ordinary Kiwi. Jacinda is very much the same.

      • Incognito 5.3.2

        Rosemary, making a beautiful aged cheese starts with putting the cows out to pasture 😉

        I like Ms Ardern’s speeches – they are good to excellent – but I’m watching this Government with interest rather than with excitement and heightened levels of anticipation if you follow me …

        • Molly

          “but I’m watching this Government with interest rather than with excitement and heightened levels of anticipation”
          You’ve captured my perspective well, incognito. Thanks.

  6. Sparky 6

    Yes and the govt she leads plans to sign the CP-TPP. You can add your voice here:


    • Jenny Kirk 6.1

      Interestingly, Sparky, no-one from the Maori community has raised that subject with the Prime Minister during her visit to Waitangi. Maybe they think there are more important and more immediate issues which need addressing – like homelessness, getting real jobs and opportunities going in the north, better health care and so on.

      • Molly 6.1.1

        Jenny, – do you really think that all Maaori have a hive mind, and are the bastions of all leftist values and issues?

        Also, if that is not the kaupapa of the event, it is unlikely that it will be brought up in formal discussions.

        Your requirement for Maaori to constantly be on call to address ALL issues that might impact on Maaori – and the wider society – is unrealistic.

        • Louis

          Maaori? haven’t seen “Maori” spelt like that before.

          • Molly

            Jesus, Louis are you coming on here to do your version of spray and walk away? Have already responded to your last comment to me about the use of double vowels.

            Your focus on spelling rather than content gives the impression that you are just being contrary so you don’t have to consider meaning.

            • Louis

              Don’t be ridiculous Molly and there is no need to jump down my throat. You need to keep a check on your anger issues. I didn’t see your other response, that gives an explanation, until I clicked on your link to it.

        • red-blooded

          Molly, Jenny’s comment did not suggest that Māori have a hive mind etc. Quite the opposite. She was simply pointing out that comments about the CTTPPA aren’t really relevant to this thread, because the issue hasn’t been raised at Waitangi.

          I’m sure some Māori are concerned about this agreement and some see it as an opportunity. There’s a spread of opinion about it in the wider community and there’s no reason why that would be any different amongst Māori.

          • Molly

            Jenny did suggest that if it was of concern that it would have been brought up.

            My reply pointed out that how this was not necessarily the case, and why.

            Sparky has a point. If the good intent (which I believe is sincere) is followed by actions – such as a proper review of the revised TPPA, and it’s impact on the ToW – amongst other concerns – then the words at Waitangi are something to celebrate, not jusy for Maaori but all of us.

            At present the rhetoric and deeds are not matching.

  7. Son of Don 7

    ‘No major protests, no conflict or rudeness, not even any petty rules to negotiate on the day’

    This day was peaceful as the Lower Marae has been stripped of its rights and that includes preventing the ‘shit stirring protest element’ from hijacking the day.

    ‘The Waitangi Day organising committee, with the help of NZ First MP Shane Jones, stripped Te Tii of its role after Peters and his MPs refused to go on to the lower marae last year after the media were banned’

    Good to see the ‘Harawira’ element no longer hijacks the events.

  8. Louis 8

    Very nice article Advantage, it was a pleasure to read. Thank you for posting it.

  9. Ian 9

    Her Waitangi performance is historic for sure. What it has achieved will be proof of the pudding.Sucking up to nga puhi might give her good vibes but it looks like another round of Hui and no do i.

    • patricia bremner 9.1

      “Sucking up to nga puhi” What a trite thing to say. As she said, “Hold me to account each year.” That would be a fairer way than your throw-away comment.

      • Ian 9.1.1

        Who do we hold to account if she is not there next year ?Motherhood can be a full time job.

        • red-blooded

          Parenthood can be a full time job. As it happens, in this case the full time parent will be the father. It would be great to see more men stepping up to this role rather than assuming that it has to be the woman.

  10. Carolyn_Nth 10

    Is there an issue about a pregnant woman speaking on a Marae? I understand pregnant women are considered tapu, and so shouldn’t do the karanga (call) at a marae.

    Marama Fox would like to see Māori discuss the issue of Māori women speaking on a Marae.

    Fox is fine with Ardern speaking at the marae today, if was sanctioned by local people.

    However, she is concerned exceptions are made for pakeha men and women, and not so much for Māori women.

    However, she would like to see more Maori women get the same rights. She said while it differed for some marae, in many it was tradition for only men to speak during a powhiri and sit in the front row because their role was to protect women, as childbearers.

    “Yet here is our Prime Minister, who is hapu, speaking during the powhiri.

    “It was with the sanction of the local people and that is cool.

    It will take Maori women to stand up and not accept anymore that they need to be protected by the men to speak on their behalf when we’ve been doing it so hard by ourselves for such a long time.

    Hapu means “pregnant”.

    • Antoine 10.1

      > I understand pregnant women are considered tapu, and so shouldn’t do the karanga (call) at a marae.

      > in many it was tradition for only men to speak during a powhiri and sit in the front row because their role was to protect women, as childbearers.

      Now this is all sexist and should be done away with. It is segregation of the worst sort. Men and women should have equal rights to sit anywhere and to speak.

      I’m glad that Ardern was permitted to speak, it is an important blow against sexism in the Maori world. May this continue in future Waitangi Days.


      • Molly 10.1.1

        The powhiri is the formal part of the meeting. After that concludes, many marae have women speaking.

        The issue is not one of sexism, it is of the notion of duality and bringing together two different groups – hosts and visitors. Part of this ritual is balancing male and female so they both have different – but equal roles and provide balance.

        • Antoine

          You seem nice and I have no wish to offend, but I still think it’s sexist. If women and men want to take up different roles then that’s great, but let’s not force it on them.


          • Molly


            I recognise myself in your comments. Despite being now over a half century old (WTF did those years go?), and having Māori ancestry on both sides, I had to enrol at the WoA in order to address my lack of Māori tikanga and protocols.

            Even at the basic level, thanks to the expertise and graciousness of kaiako such as Damon Heke, his wife and family, it very soon became apparent that my previous way of looking at the powhiri from a outside lens of sexism was misguided.

            The sequence and ritual of powhiri is based on the notion of taking two separate parties – visitors and hosts – and bringing them together to a sense of unity.

            This starts with the calling on of visitors (and their unseen company – ancestors) and the reciprocation of the visitors to the hosts (and their ancestors). The role is performed by women, because as childbearers they are considered to be closer to the spirit world than men, and they can call across that unseen barrier more easily. The reason why women on their menstrual cycle and those who are pregnant are not allowed to perform this role, is because they (and any unborn child) is vulnerable to spirit at this time.

            Men give the challenge – and accept it. Men relate the whakapapa and pepeha – women follow it up with a relevant waiata.

            All choreographed to bring balance – host then visitor, women then men, talk then song, starting with the ethereal spirit , ending with the physical act of breaking bread. Tapu to noa.

            Strangers to sharing hongi.

            This is not a sexist practice, it is stylised ritual of weaving together strands to create a unified whole.

            When the formal process is over, marae practice on women speaking usually then is applied, and the sexes mix as they like.

            My level of knowledge is admittedly basic, but it is enough for me to understand that the way I viewed this issue in the past was ignorant, (and also that I can take it on the chin if I need to be corrected on any of these issues.)

            Consider: Kuia on a marae are respected as much as koroua, (if not more). I don’t know if the same could be said in our modern NZ society.

            • Antoine

              > marae practice on women speaking usually then is applied

              Which is…?


              • Molly

                Depend on the marae – as does the strictness of the customs relating to the formal process. Don’t forget these are physical homes to people, with the diversity of people that means a diversity of home rules.

                But I was trying to give you a new perspective, not condense the practise of all Māori and marae in one comment.

                Cliff notes for a basic sketch, to give an overview not a comprehensive knowledge.

                Did any of it sink in?

                • Antoine

                  > Did any of it sink in?

                  Yes, thank you.

                  (But I still maintain that if there is a place and time where women are not permitted to speak on substantive matters – as opposed to in a ceremonial/performance context such as the powhiri – then that sucks.)

                  • Molly

                    But that is an assumption you are making.

                    After the formal part of the powhiri, it is not unusual for women to have their voices heard. The constant criticism of hui is that too long is spent in talking, but it is precisely because all are given opportunities to have their say that the process takes so long – when done well.

                    You have made the assumption that the powhiri protocol is all there is. It is just the beginning.

                    I have attended many public meetings where the men have dominated the floor and time without protocols.

                    And this imbalance is not addressed by any formal ritual of male and female roles to create the space where they at least start the discussion as equals.

                    Perhaps this formal acknowledgement and balancing is one that should be emulated in wider society?

                    • Antoine

                      > But that is an assumption you are making.

                      Based on what I have read e.g. http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=112121,

                      “Maori lawyer and journalist Moana Sinclair, who recalls being ordered to sit down several times when she rose to speak on a marae, says change is definitely needed.

                      The protocol forbidding women to speak is a product of colonisation and urbanisation, she says.

                      “I’ve seen Whaia McClutchie struggle when she was alive [to] get up on a marae. They cut her down, and she was known as the woman who got up and spoke.””


                    • Molly

                      You are deliberately avoiding acknowledging being shown a different perspective, and even equally using your critique on the prevalent dominant culture.

                      Maaori are not a hive mind, and this requirement for all to speak as one quite frankly pisses me off.

                      Differences of opinion and courtesy is expected in every group of people, why is this not accepted to be true also for Maaori?

                      My thoughts are that this approach makes it easier to sidestep and move away from honest discussions. But that it hardly a news to anyone in NZ.

  11. Ian 11

    jacinda is hapu but also has promised heaps of money to Northland maori. She is paying her dues and everything is Kapai. I salute the queen of niceness and candy floss. Northland maori have been cleansed of poverty.

  12. Son of Don 12

    Labour have a history of shitting on Maori (Seabed and Foreshore, Terrorist Raids etc). Let’s see how long the gloss lasts for until Peters starts to exert his influence over issues such as water, treaty settlements, work for the dole etc

    • One Anonymous Bloke 12.1

      Hasn’t David Farrar brought you up to speed?

      The Government has announced the first tranche of its plan to get youth into jobs with a $13 million fund aimed at 2000 young people in the regions – but NZ First MP Shane Jones’ talk of work for the dole has been kicked into touch.

      Andrew Little is the minister for treaty settlements. I realise that you are desperate to display your disappointment at losing the election, but it looks like it’s making you delusional too.

      Will you be ok?

      • Chuck 12.1.1

        “Andrew Little is the minister for treaty settlements.”

        Let us hope he can do better than the previous 3 Labour ministers for TOW settlements.

        “But judging the two partys’ records – even leaving aside the contentious foreshore and seabed legislation – one crucial factor does play into National’s favour.”

        “The last National Government were far more successful settling Treaty of Waitangi claims than the previous Labour one.”


        • One Anonymous Bloke

          I suspect that’s as much an accident of timing as anything else. The settlement process started in 1995. Some claims were bound to take longer than others.

          Labour screwed up the Foreshore & Seabed issue, and again, the timing was nothing to do with them. I’m not convinced National would have handled it any better.

          A cursory glance at the National Party brains trust Kiwiblog comments section on any given day will tell you more about the National Party’s actual relationship with tangata whenua. It can be summed up in three words: build more prisons.

  13. Venezia 13

    A great post Ad. I too never thought I’d see the day a NZ Prime Minister delivers such an open invitation of true partnership to Maori Treaty partners. Jacinda has demonstrated her openness, and signalled a new dawn in government commitment to do whatever is possible to deliver on dealing with glaring inequalities. Bravi to her and to the Coalition partners. This is a great start.

  14. Stuart Munro 14

    It’s a promising start – but the test will be whether the evident goodwill remains some years down the track. A genuine democracy cannot help but be popular, a less representative one necessarily loses ground.

  15. Ad 15

    Another morning in Waitangi, another day of glorious media coverage for Prime Minister Ardern:


    Simon Wilson coming into his own this year – as you would expect with this kind of government.

  16. Ad 16

    …and melts Claire Trevett’s heart:


    Key wasn’t this good.

  17. JustMe 17

    In advance please excuse my pending and intended crudeness in this posting of mine.Especially to those who have penis’s but can see what I am getting at in my comments.
    We now have an inclusive and not an ex-clusive government. We no longer have a government and a Prime Minister who preferred to shake hands with the wealthy and dish out food to the wealthy at the Copthorne Hotel instead of doing what Jacinda and co are doing i.e having a barbie for the EVERYONE.
    The memory for many of John Key when at a barbie is he is swigging at a bottle of beer whilst standing next to Prince William(aka the future King of England and the Commonwealth). And this guy(Key) gets a knighthood out of it???!!!!
    What the previous government had and the National Party still has is far too many penis’s that have enjoyed an enchanted life at NZ taxpayers expense. The previous government spent many millions of dollars of NZ taxpayers money on Beemers with bum-warming seats whilst at the same time cutting back funding on such essential services like Lifeline.
    How many young Maori have committed suicide over the past 9 years of the past National government because there was just no future for them that they could look forward to? In fact how many young people of all races have committed suicide over the past 9 years even whilst John Key was washing his car???!!!
    There is a rampant arrogance in the NZ National Party that is so obvious but the NZ media(being the mouthpiece of the NZ National Party)chose to ignore those shows the ‘Us and Them’ attitude and approach by National
    National, whilst in government, happily portrayed that image to even the poor of the “We are rich and you(the poor)are poor…”. They will never change. Their attitude remains with them no matter whomever is their leader today and into the future.
    After such a long time of seeing so much over the past 9 years whilst there was a National government I am feeling there is something here in NZ that makes me feel more proud to be called a Kiwi. And it’s all thanks to this new government. Whilst I will find fault with this government to date I am quite pleased with what they have achieved so far. Unlike a previous National government whose previous leader swore no increase in GST but happily and without an ounce of remorse on his part broke that promise as quickly as he made it. Mind you he promised some employees of a company he worked for that they wouldn’t be out of a job but by lunch-time they found out they were. Such are the words of the Smiling Assassin.

    • Louis 17.1

      Excellent post there JustMe, couldn’t agree with you more.

    • patricia bremner 17.2

      JustMe 1000% ..This is a truthful post.

      Jacinda said “We are not seeking perfection.” and “Judge us when we come back by what we have done.” “disagreement is healthy.” She named the four areas to try to improve. “Housing Mental Health (suicides) Poverty and Incarceration.”

      John Key said “Some people make bad choices.” They sure did!! They voted for him and the rest of that divisive lot!!

      The coalition won’t be perfect, but they are vastly better than National and Act et al.

  18. chris73 18

    National voting white man from South Island pops head in, looks around, ponders asking question about sexist treatment of women on Mare but thinks better of it, closes door and heads to another post 🙂

  19. mary_a 19

    Maybe Jacinda being hapu, was the reason her partner Clarke was invited to pick up the wero on her behalf. Perhaps according to Maori tradition, Jacinda’s condition precluded her from receiving the wero, because she was tapu. However, I stand to be corrected here.

    • Molly 19.1

      Women, unless they are acknowledged warriors – do not usually pick up the wero. Pregnant or not.

      The wero is not a gift – it is a challenge, accepted with caution in case the challenge is accompanied with physical altercation from the hosts. Not usual in modern times, but there have been instances in the past according to anecdotes related in the tikanga class I attended.

      There are essentially two questions in Rosemary’s initial query:
      1. Does it follow Maaori protocol for an accompanying partner to fill that role, as opposed to one of the principals of the visitors?
      2. Given that the visit to the marae was one of the government to the marae, in this instance, isn’t it appropriate to honour those roles by utilising one of the males in the Labour Party to accept that challenge?

      It is great that there are those feeling the love on Waitangi Day and enjoying the supposedly “protest-free” celebrations. Although, I’ve only been there once on Waitangi Day – during John Key’s reign and heavy police presence – there was a lot of celebration on those days too. The media focused on the peaceful protests, and disregarded the rest. At least today, they are showing some balance.

      Mind you, I think that Waitangi Day is the most appropriate day to remind the country that the Treaty has not been honoured by the Crown, and subsequent governments. So the “protest-free Waitangi” is not the accolade to me, it appears to be for many others.

      • Louis 19.1.1

        Suggest you read Claire Trevett’s piece that Ad has put up Molly.

        • Molly

          Don’t really like Trevett’s usual standard of writing, so didn’t bother.

          But what points do you think are relevant to this comment Louis?

          • Louis

            Suggesting you read Claire Trevett’s article that Ad above has linked to doesn’t make me a fan, because I’m not, but she covered the point you were making about “protest free.”

      • weka 19.1.2

        “Mind you, I think that Waitangi Day is the most appropriate day to remind the country that the Treaty has not been honoured by the Crown, and subsequent governments. So the “protest-free Waitangi” is not the accolade to me, it appears to be for many others.”


        I think this week is a watershed moment, and Ardern has a big part in that. I also hope that the protests change now, because the government still needs to be held to account.

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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Trans-Tasman travel window to close at midnight tomorrow
    A further 500 MIQ rooms released for managed returnees from NSW Further Government actions announced today are balanced to provide more certainty for Kiwis wanting to return from Australia, while continuing to protect New Zealand from COVID-19, acting Minister for COVID-19 Response Ayesha Verrall says. The actions were foreshadowed last ...
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    4 days ago
  • Govt investing millions in Hawke's Bay and Tairāwhiti schools
    Napier Boys’ and Girls’ High Schools are among those set to benefit from a $16.5 million investment in the Hawke's Bay and Tairāwhiti region, Economic and Regional Development Minister Stuart Nash announced today. The Government has set aside money in Budget 2021 to accelerate five projects in Napier, Hastings, Havelock North ...
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    5 days ago
  • Game changing Jobs for Nature investment for Northland
    Conservation Minister Kiri Allan has announced Jobs for Nature funding for a portfolio of projects that will create ‘game changing’ gains for nature and communities across Northland/Te Tai Tokerau as part of the Government’s acceleration of the economic recovery from COVID. “This portfolio of 12 projects will see over $20 ...
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    5 days ago
  • Third COVID-19 vaccine receives provisional approval
    New Zealand’s regulatory authority Medsafe has granted provisional approval of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine for individuals 18 years of age and older, Acting Minister for COVID-19 Response Dr Ayesha Verrall announced today. New Zealand secured 7.6 million doses (enough for 3.8 million people) of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine through an ...
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    5 days ago
  • Bowel-cancer screening programme is saving lives
    More than 1000 New Zealanders have had bowel cancer – New Zealand’s second-most-common cause of death from cancer - detected under the Government’s National Bowel Screening Programme, Health Minister Andrew Little said today. More than 1200 New Zealanders died from bowel cancer in 2017. The screening programme aims to save ...
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    5 days ago
  • Govt welcomes draft report on the retail grocery sector
    The Commerce Commission’s draft report into the retail grocery sector is being welcomed by Government as a major milestone. “I asked the Commerce Commission to look at whether this sector is as competitive as it could be and today it has released its draft report for consultation,” Commerce and Consumer ...
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    5 days ago
  • Christchurch’s Youth Hub ‘set to go’ thanks to further Government funding
    Construction of New Zealand’s first, purpose-built centre for youth well-being is ready to get underway thanks to an extra $2.5 million of COVID-19 response funding, Housing Minister and Associate Minister of Finance, Megan Woods announced today.  “The Christchurch Youth Hub is about bringing together all the things young people need ...
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    5 days ago
  • Next step to protect Milford Sound Piopiotahi
    Expert group lays out plan to better protect iconic UNESCO World Heritage site Milford Sound Piopiotahi and its surrounds Funding confirmed for dedicated unit and Establishment Board to assess the recommendations and provide oversight of the process from here Milford Opportunities Project a test case for transformational change in tourism ...
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    6 days ago
  • Funding for projects to reduce waste from construction and demolition
    The Government has announced funding for projects in Auckland and the lower North Island to help reduce construction and demolition waste. “Construction is the main source of waste sent to landfill, and much of this could be reduced, reused and recovered,” Environment Minister David Parker said. “The Government is funding ...
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    6 days ago
  • Speech at the launch of the National Hepatitis C Action Plan
    Tēnā koutou katoa. Thank you Anglesea Pharmacy and Te Manawa Taki for hosting this event. As a doctor, I saw first hand the impact of hepatitis C. I met Moana in 2019; she came to the infectious diseases outpatient clinic at Wellington Hospital having tested positive for hepatitis C. Like ...
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    6 days ago
  • Plan to eliminate hepatitis C as a major health threat by 2030
    A plan to eliminate hepatitis C in New Zealand, reducing liver cancer and the need for liver transplants, has been released today by Associate Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall. “Around 45,000 New Zealanders have hepatitis C, but only around half know they have it,” said Ayesha Verrall. “Symptoms often ...
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    6 days ago
  • School upgrades and new classrooms for West Coast, Tasman and Canterbury
    A funding injection from Budget 2021 to complete four shovel ready projects and new classrooms at six schools and kura will provide a real boost to local communities, Minister Dr Megan Woods announced today. “This Government has committed to providing quality fit for purpose learning environments and 100,000 new student ...
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    6 days ago
  • Warmer Kiwi Homes smashes annual target
    The Government's highly successful insulation and heating programme, Warmer Kiwi Homes, is celebrating a key milestone with the completion of more than 38,000 insulation and efficient heater installs in the year to the end of June, smashing its target of 25,000 installs for the year. “The Warmer Kiwi Homes scheme ...
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    7 days ago
  • Exemption granted for Wallabies to enter NZ
    Bledisloe Cup rugby will be played in New Zealand after the Australian rugby team received an economic exemption to enter New Zealand. Travel between Australia and New Zealand was suspended on Friday for at least eight weeks following the worsening of the COVID outbreak across the Tasman. New Zealanders have ...
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    7 days ago
  • Minister of Foreign Affairs makes three diplomatic appointments
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced three New Zealand Head of Mission appointments. They are: Mike Walsh as Ambassador to Iran Michael Upton as Ambassador to Ethiopia and the African Union Kevin Burnett as Ambassador to Indonesia Iran “Aotearoa New Zealand has a long-standing and constructive relationship with Iran, despite a ...
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    7 days ago
  • Enhanced Task Force Green Approved for West Coast and Marlborough
    The Government has activated Enhanced Task Force Green (ETFG) in response to the West Coast and Marlborough floods, Social Development and Employment Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced today. “To assist with the clean-up, up to $500,000 will be made available to support the recovery in Buller and Marlborough which has experienced ...
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    7 days ago
  • Govt support for upgrade of Eden Park players facilities
    Minister for Sport and Recreation Hon Grant Robertson has announced funding to upgrade the players facilities at Eden Park ahead of upcoming Women’s World Cup events. Eden Park is a confirmed venue for the Rugby World Cup 2021, the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup 2022, and a proposed venue for matches of ...
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    7 days ago
  • More jobs and quicker public transport motoring towards West Auckland
    Work to improve public transport for West Aucklanders and support the region’s economic recovery by creating hundreds of jobs has officially kicked off, Transport Minister Michael Wood announced today. Michael Wood and Auckland Mayor Phil Goff this morning marked the start of construction on the Northwestern Bus Improvements project. It ...
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    7 days ago
  • Government backs critical health research
    Research into some of New Zealanders’ biggest health concerns including cancer, diabetes, and heart disease is getting crucial support in the latest round of health research funding, Health Minister Andrew Little announced today. The funding, awarded through the Health Research Council of New Zealand, covers 31 General Project grants ($36.64 ...
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    7 days ago
  • New Bay of Islands hospital facilities to bring services closer to home
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Andrew Little have joined a ceremony to bless the site and workers for Phase Two of the redevelopment of the Bay of Islands Hospital in Kawakawa today. The new building will house outpatients and primary care facilities, as well as expanded renal care ...
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    1 week ago
  • Raukokore re-imagined with ‘smart’ relocatable rent to own housing
    Iwi, Crown Partnership Relocatable, fully insulated housing, connected to a new solar plant Provides a pathway to home ownership New housing in the remote eastern Bay of Plenty community of Raukokore shows how iwi and Crown agencies can work together effectively to provide warm, dry, energy efficient homes in a ...
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    1 week ago
  • Cabinet accepts Turkish authorities’ request for the managed return of three NZ citizens
    Cabinet has agreed to the managed return of a New Zealand citizen and her two young children from Turkey, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. The three have been in immigration detention in Turkey since crossing the border from Syria earlier this year. Turkey has requested that New Zealand repatriate ...
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    1 week ago
  • Govt delivers more classrooms so children can focus on learning
    Extra Government investment in classrooms and school building projects will enable students and teachers to focus on education rather than overcrowding as school rolls grow across the country, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis say. The pair visited Ruakākā School in Whangārei today to announce $100 ...
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    1 week ago
  • New station a platform for AirportLink to take off
    Every Aucklander with access to the rail network will now have a quick and convenient trip to the airport, Transport Minister Michael Wood and Auckland Mayor Phil Goff said during the official opening of the new Puhinui Interchange today. The new interchange links the rail platform with a new bus ...
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    1 week ago
  • 10 days sick leave for employees delivered
    Legislation doubling employees’ minimum sick leave entitlement to 10 days comes into effect today, bringing benefits to both businesses and employees, Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Michael Wood announced today. “Our Government is delivering on a key manifesto commitment to help Kiwis and workplaces stay healthy,” Michael Wood said. “COVID-19 ...
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    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister congratulates Fiame Naomi Mata’afa on Election Win
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern tonight congratulated Prime Minister-elect Fiame Naomi Mata’afa on her victory in the Samoa’s general election. “New Zealand has a special relationship with Samoa, anchored in the Treaty of Friendship. We look forward to working with Samoa’s new government in the spirit of partnership that characterises this ...
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    1 week ago
  • Quarantine Free Travel with Australia suspended
    Quarantine Free Travel from all Australian states and territories to New Zealand is being suspended as the Covid situation there worsens, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. From 11.59pm today Australians will no longer be able to enter New Zealand quarantine-free. This will be ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Growing conservation efforts in Gisborne
    A big injection of Jobs for Nature funding will create much-needed jobs and financial security for families in TeTairāwhiti, and has exciting prospects for conservation in the region, Conservation Minister Kiri Allan says. “The projects target local communities most affected by the economic consequences of COVID 19 and are designed ...
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    2 weeks ago