I agree with Shane Jones…


Stuff?reports: quote:

NZ First MP Shane?Jones has savaged a proposal for a giant statue of?Papat??nuku?at Bastion Point, saying it is laughable Aucklanders?are forking out for the work.

Auckland Council has earmarked $1 million in its budget for the project, but Ng?ti Wh?tua ?rakei Trust deputy chairman?spokesman Ngarimu Blair says the idea is unformed and it is?”early days”.

“We would need to see a full proposal and consider this in a wider context before deciding to take the idea any further,” he said. end quote.

In other words, it is a million dollars now. It will be several million before the idea even gets off the ground. Quote:

Stuff?understands the idea for the?statue, or pou, has been under discussion for 18 months by the?Ng?ti?Wh?tua??rakei?Reserves Board, which is chaired by the?iwi, includes Auckland councillor?Desley??Simpson?and?co-manages the Bastion Point land.

But Jones, who is also Regional Economic Development Minister and Associate Finance Minister,?ripped into the idea during an interview with?Stuff?on Monday.

“The notion that the ratepayers of Auckland should?foot the costs for this cultural mimicry promoted by the??r?kei?hap? is risible,” Jones said.

“We need to bear in mind that the Maoris up at??r?kei do not have an exclusive?rights to promote a statue in the form of the earth goddess on behalf of anyone other than themselves.

“If they want it for themselves then they should spend their own money and not misrepresent the broader Maori community that a statue, in the form of Christ the Redeemer out of Brazil, is an appropriate expression of Maori identity, or indeed New Zealand identity.”

Jones said he was speaking out on the proposal?because “significant numbers of M?ori”?? both Auckland ratepayers and those from the north?? were aghast?at the?proposal, which Jones said had?been put up “in the form of a?cultural?hot air balloon?without any consultation,without any mandate and without a sliver of support.

“If such a pretentious?gesture is their long-term ambition then pay for it yourselves.”

Meanwhile, Ng?ti?Wh?tua was trying to slow down?talk of plans for the?statue on its land at Bastion Point. End quote.

Suddenly, we seem to be in the midst of the Maorification of everything. I have absolutely no problem with Maori culture and heritage being a part of our life, as it always was. But suddenly, we are being overrun. We are not, of course, the numbers haven’t changed. But now every event, every thought, every process, is Maorified. And, I have to say, that most of the Maori people I know are as uninterested in all of it as everyone else. Quote:

Auckland?Mayor Phil Goff had enthusiastically backed the idea of a statue of earth mother Papatuanuku on land above the Waitemata Harbour.

“The pou has the potential to be an iconic symbol of Auckland. It will reflect the unique culture and identity of our city and be enjoyed equally by Maori, the wider community and international visitors to our region,” Goff said. End quote.

Just wasting more ratepayers money, Phil. You are good at that. You are good at turning it away too, from people who want to hold events in council venues. Quote:

Jones said?he was “astounded” Auckland Council?had?”spare change to give to Maoridom’s richest?hap?”?when the Government was supporting the city council’s ability?to raise money through a regional fuel tax.

“The word?Papat??nuku?means earth goddess, what are?they?thinking erecting some massive planet? I would say to you, culturally speaking,?their?thinking is off the planet,”?Jones?said.End quote.

I love the way councils just keep pushing up rates like the world is about to end, and then spend our hard earned money on fluff pieces like this. No offence intended, but gee. Quote:

The iwi, and others across Auckland have their eyes firmly on the tourism?opportunities?in 2021, when the city hosts the America’s Cup, the APEC leaders meeting, and the national?Kapa?haka finals.

[Nairimu] Blair said, for Ng?ti?Wh?tua,?it was an investment decision, and whatever happened?on its land may also include other elements such as a visitor centre, or cultural centre. End quote.

?I think councils should be more responsible with ratepayers money, and I am not alone in thinking that. Quote:

Another early opponent of the idea was National’s Helensville MP Chris Penk.

“Please, please, please sort out the basic infrastructure in the West and Northwest (and elsewhere too … but start with my patch) before talking about statues!” he wrote in a Facebook post. End quote.

I agree with Shane Jones on this. I think I need a lie down.