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Unaffiliated Maori get Willie Jackson, Norm Dewes, Willie Te Aho to fisheries trust

Friday 20th January 2017

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Te Ohu Kaimoana, which oversees Māori fisheries assets, has named Willie Jackson, Norm Dewes and Willie Te Aho to the board of a $20 million trust for unaffiliated Māori after a successful challenge to the appointment of iwi-linked directors.

Last year the National Urban Māori Authority (NUMA) and Te Waipareira Trust won a High Court claim for representation on Te Putea Whakatupu Trust, set up to provide training and research opportunities in the fisheries sector. The trust was set up under the 2004 Māori Fisheries Act as part of the settlement of Māori fishing rights claims to provide for urban Māori who might not benefit from iwi-based settlements because they no longer had an active association with their tribe.

“The trust has been through a period of considerable uncertainty in recent months and this has constrained its ability to meet its legislative objectives," Te Ohu Kaimoana chair Jamie Tuuta said in a statement. "The new directors have articulated their vision in how they see the trust operating in the future, and Te Ohu Kaimoana considers they have the right skills for the job of growing Māori participation in the workforce and the education system."

Te Ohu Kaimoana had been the respondent in the High Court case. Today it thanked the three outgoing interim directors who'd been appointed by the High Court – Bill Wilson QC, Roger Drummond and Graeme Mitchell. The new directors will take up their role next month, the commission said.

As well as being a high-profile broadcaster, Willie Jackson is chair of the National Urban Māori Authority, chief executive of the Manukau Urban Māori Authority and chair of the Māori Radio Network. Norm Dewes is chair of the Christchurch urban Māori authority, Te Rūnanga o Ngā Maata Waka, while Te Aho is a lawyer and company executive.

BusinessDesk.co.nz

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