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Accord Update #31

A mighty Kauri has fallen

by the Hokianga Accord

April 2010


This article was originally written for the New Zealand Fishing News May 2010 edition.

Judah Heihei, co-chairman of the Hokianga Accord passed away peacefully and unexpectedly at the end of March.

Many friends and whanau of Judah and the Hokianga Accord attended his tangi held at Te Tii marae in the Bay of Islands several days later.

Judah’s unwavering commitment to bring both Maori and non-Maori together in understanding and trust to achieve more fish in the water is a legacy we will all be proud of.

From our very humble beginnings Judah has been central to the Accord’s success. Judah and Ngati Rehia hosted our first hui in May 2005 and this year we are celebrating our fourteenth overnight hui.

Judah Heihei with fellow Accord hui participants, Whakamaharatanga marae, Hokianga. December 2008.

(Click on image for larger view)

Ngati Rehia, Ngapuhi, option4, the NZ Sport Fishing Council and wider Bay of Islands community are so much richer for having known this man of generosity, dignity, rich humour, patience, truth and humility.

Judah’s guidance, insight and ability to transcend cultural boundaries will be sorely missed.

Haere haere haere.

April Accord hui

Our next hui, on Thursday 22nd and Friday 23rd April is shaping up to be a busy couple of days. The agenda is full of interesting topics ranging from seaweed management to the impacts of the proposed underwater turbines in the Kaipara Harbour on the fish populations.

A copy of the Naumai hui agenda is online. Feel free to download the agenda and come along with your pre-prepared questions.

Venue for the hui is Naumai marae, Ruawai, on the highway to Dargaville. Everyone is welcome to attend. For more details visit www.HokiangaAccord.co.nz call Shelley Naera on 0275 872466 or Trish Rea on 0274 175121.

Kahawai review

Kahawai is an important fishery for mid north iwi and hapu. Both Ngapuhi and Ngati Whatua were heavily involved in the Kahawai Legal Challenge initiated in 2005.

Ngapuhi chairman, Sonny Tau, wrote an insightful affidavit explaining the social and cultural impacts of having so few kahawai available for people to feed themselves. This document and all the other supporting kahawai affidavits are online and available for downloading.

Feel free to browse through the online documents before attending the hui, as the discussion about the upcoming Ministry of Fisheries’ review of kahawai management will be an interesting debate.

There is one certainty; we need more fish in the water so that our seas remain healthy enough to sustain abundant life. Current management and possible higher commercial catch limits for kahawai will not deliver that outcome.

Irrespective of the available “science”, people who fish for food to feed their whanau [family] know that there are less kahawai in the water in the places that are traditionally fished.

We also know that we cannot keep stealing the ocean’s riches for ourselves while leaving the invoice for our descendants.

Come along to the next Hokianga Accord hui and participate in the robust discussions so that we can all achieve "more fish in the water/kia maha atu nga ika ki roto i te wai".



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