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Accord Update #19

Next Hui Confirmed - Mark Your Diaries

by the Hokianga Accord

March 2009


This article was originally written for the New Zealand Fishing News April 2009 edition.


The next Hokianga Accord hui is now on the 11th and 12th June at Whitiora marae, Te Tii, Kerikeri, Bay of Islands.

Now is your chance to experience an overnight hui close to Auckland.

These will be two memorable days of robust discussion about fisheries management and marine protection issues, with the objective of achieving “more fish in the water/kia maha atu nga ika ki roto i te wai”.

Thorny issue - catch information

High on the agenda will be the thorny issue of catch information.

How many fish do people actually catch? Does that amount meet peoples’ needs or interests? How can we protect our taonga/treasure so our mokopuna inherit healthy fisheries and an environment that will sustain them in the future?

Kahawai challenge

An update of the Kahawai Legal Challenge Supreme Court proceedings will also be a feature of this hui. If the Court has released a judgment prior to this hui that decision will be summarised.

Both Ngapuhi and Ngati Whatua have strongly supported the Challenge alongside option4 and the New Zealand Big Game Fishing Council.

It was notable to see the Court’s public gallery almost full on February 12th, with a mixture of legal, commercial and non-commercial representatives. This turnout was an indication of how important these proceedings are in the long-term management of all our fisheries, not just kahawai.

As the mid north iwi fisheries forum, the Accord is vitally interested in the Court’s view of how the Minister of Fisheries should be managing our natural resources so that people can provide for their social, economic and cultural wellbeing through fishing.

Marine Protected Areas

Another emerging issue is the establishment of the northeast Marine Protected Areas forum. This group of 14 people will be formulating plans for marine protection in the northeast bioregion, extending from Ahipara on the northwest coast of the North Island, across the top and down to East Cape.

Marine reserves, fishing method and area restrictions are expected to be part of this MPA strategy being initiated by the Department of Conservation and Ministry of Fisheries.

The Accord hopes that people with an interest in this vast region are given ample opportunity to participate in the forum, consider, consult, and then deliver the best outcomes for their local areas.

How the 14 forum participants will be appointed is unclear, as is the departments’ mechanism for engaging with tangata whenua.

Maori have significant interests in all aspects of fishing – environmental, commercial, customary and amateur. The Fisheries Minister also has a statutory obligation to have particular regard to kaitiakitanga/guardianship.

The Hokianga Accord is keen to contribute to the MPA process to achieve our goal of fish abundance, availability and a healthy marine environment to sustain us all.

These and other issues will be discussed at the next Hokianga Accord hui in June at Whitiora marae, Te Tii, Bay of Islands. All welcome – please call Shelley Naera on 0275 872466 for more details if you would like to attend.



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