Feb 9, 2011

The iwi elite

As I predicted iwi leaders, namely Tuku Morgan, have come out in support of the Maori Party leadership. Readers will know I am no fan of the self proclaimed ‘Iwi Leadership Group’ (for good reason I assure you).

In my opinion self preservation motivates the group’s stance. Members of The Iwi Leadership Group (ILG) have, through The Maori Party, formed personal networks with members of the current government. Herein lays the problem. The ILG has only formed networks and built relationships with one side of the political divide. Therefore, the ILG has access to only one team – The National Party. Ultimately, a second term National government will ensure the ILG have continued access to the top. The group has correctly identified Hone Harawira as an impediment to a second term National government and an impediment to a long term Maori Party/National Party strategic alliance. Therefore, the ILG want him gone.

If Labour occupies the Treasury benches post-election the ILG may lose their ability to access government and subsequently influence policy. Labour can easily ignore the ILG - their support is not critical to the legitimacy of government policy nor is the group well established or economically powerful enough to the point where they cannot be ignored. Some ignorant commentators paint the ILG as some sort of economic powerhouse but the reality is quite the opposite. The ILG cannot leverage government with economic threats. The groups leverage is purely political in nature.

The ILG probably entertain the idea that they are ‘big players’ and this is why they enjoy a cosy relationship with the current government. The ILG is in such a cosy position because it suits the Nat’s agenda. The ILG serves an important function – they legitimise and promote National Party policy. It is in the best interests of The National Party to have an ideological ally in Maoridom. Without such an ally the Nats Maori policy would probably encounter a fair degree of opposition and, as one commentator put it, cultural blackmail. The support of the ILG lends the Nat’s Maori policy a degree of legitimacy and ensures some political stability. A brown rubber stamp if you will.

Ultimately the ILG is a creation of The National Party. The Nats have elevated the ILG to their current position as the dominant Maori voice in New Zealand politics. This fucks me off. The ILG is limiting Maori political participation. As the go to brown guys in New Zealand the ILG are shutting out ordinary Maori. The ILG is not subject to scrutiny, their direction is not debated among Maori and access is granted only to the elite. The ILG is also entrenching political inequality in New Zealand. The group is strengthening the voice of the wealthy and elite in Maori society – not the flaxroot. Lastly, the ILG, in my opinion, lacks any legitimacy. I did not vote for any of those clowns. I don’t know of anyone who did. They are not publicly accountable to me either. The ILG is a self appointed and anointed clique. Nothing more nothing less. Just a bunch of chiefs with no cloaks.


  1. You and me both.
    This 'phantom' / purported representation is just that. Wisps of lots of hot brown air. Falsetto mumbling strutting brown male with receding hairlines and missing teeth.

    Morgan in particular has a diminishing rep given his vicious prolonged, spectacular and unsuccessful ham-fisted attack on Tania Martin.

    We also want him gone -- his cronies on TAA are only there to support their personal desires -- as the Rules of TK are written in its favour -- with absolute power -- no ability to challenge its decisions - even after the fact. Hell they even appoint the auditor with no ability from TKI to participate or influence that decision.

    And I was shocked to see him presenting his personal views as though he had a mandate to say what he said on investing in infrastructure and other proposed SOE-purchases.

    I also did not vote for him - at any time - he is tex ormsby - aka bubba mahuta incarnate -- who also believed and managed to convince himself and other sheep -- he is an elite leader.

    Morgan is dreaming -- as an ex-tv-jock and ex-mp a move towards making him an -ex-chair and exile him to nowhere land is afoot.

    He has no cloak - no title -- no respect -- and therefore is not worthy of any acknowledgement.

    Even though the Waikato settlement occurred in 1995 the statistics have not improved -- many Waikato people still suffer poor health, deprivation, sexual, physical abuse is rife and poverty continues to befall the majority.

    TAA set up a company called Waikato -Tainui Koioara Ltd - to manage the Whanau Ora tender. Guess who sits on that board? Read who continues to double/triple dip on board and director fees? Read whose names continue to be inserted?

    Read and weep at the outcome --the bottom layer continues to languish while a few greedy pricks and prickesses get richer --

    One female board member we calculate makes around $300k a year with the combined fees and TAA sanctioned directors appointments -- and her inflated salary as a solicitor in a auckland-based law firm.

    So what benefits flow from this one-she-person and the one-appointed dandy (Morgan) to the people they claim to represent?

    Ah - yes well - um and oh - we'll get back to you on that and it may take some time.

  2. That’s right.

    Tuku espouses his personal views as if they are the position of all the whanau, marae, hapu and iwi of Tainui. He does so with supreme confidence as if he is the righteous saviour of Tainui. He is a toxic mix of arrogance, narrow-mindedness and duplicity. Who is he to dictate to Te Kauhanganui? He is their subordinate after all. However, he views himself as the Arikinui of Tainui.

    It worries me that Tuku and his mates (Patience Te Ao and pretty much every other TAA board member) have their hands in every possible pot. Tainui are getting ripped off by a few ‘corporate fat cats’.

    The sooner Tania Martin and Te Kauhanganui do something about it the better.

  3. Good analysis Morgan, but I have to say that iwi have strong links into Labour as well (i.e. Nanaia and Parekura). It's true though, the ILG have grown in strength under the Nats and the Maori Party, but they were there with Labour. Not a good situation at all.

  4. I agree - the ILG have cross-party relationships. I dont think that they have a vested interest in national staying in power, ther interest will be an assessment of which party is most likely to deliver results to Maori at any given time. in other words i think that their loyalty is to their own tribes, rather than to a particular party.

    I do agree that it suits the Crown to work with a defined group. I also agree that some of the members are loose cannons. But not all of the ILG members are unrepresentative of their own tribe, and you cant attribute Tuku's behaviour to everyone.

    In terms of the comments above, actually the director you are referring to resigned some time ago from her former job to concentrate on iwi work. You should be glad that she is employable and objectively qualified - the ones you should be more worried about are the ones that cant get a regular professional job.



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