The people of Ngai Tahu that I have met really believe in creating a better future for their children and their childrens children. Many iwi members sacrifice a lot to do their best to give their tamariki a good start in life. The lucky ones are bought up within our culture and learn from those that know. The less lucky ones grow up as kiwi's. It's often only later in life that they begin to find their way back to their home fires. And, like many things in life, that is when the hard work begins.
What is the current infighting doing to the confidence and self belief of our tribe?
The two camps have to pull their heads out and front up to the problem. Enough of the secret meetings and leaked documents. Front up and let the people decide what is right and what is wrong.
For too long this iwi has been in fear. We are now afraid of our own. People are afraid to speak their truth because they might lose their jobs. people say nothing because they are gagged. There are 18 representatives why are they not letting their views be known. Some have spoken out and raised their heads - kia kaha!
The problem can only be sorted by kanohi ki te kanohi. Face to face. We always look our foes in the eye, we always have. Get all of the fighting done, say all of the secret hatreds and slights that have accumulated, clean the pus out and begin to heal the wounds.
The teams both contain people I know and respect, but everyone's honour is being lost the longer this goes on. It is time for our kaumatua and respected ones to speak up and impose some order.
The real problem is communication. Between the two waring parties, but even more importantly with the majority of iwi members. Thank the gods for BB and Richard otherwise the only things we would know are what the Press, ODT and Hearld are printing. Its not good enough. The Ngai Tahu website is a disgrace. Where are the forums for iwi members to discuss the issues? Where are the places to create online communities? Why are Ngai Tahu whanui been kept in the dark?
Too many of our so called leaders treat us like idiots, they feed us spin and lie to our faces. It really is not good enough. We were colonised and made subjects in out own land and now when we really need our leaders to be strong and build our tikanga and lanuage and to bring more of our people home, instead they weaken us.
It's not all about you! it's for us and our children after us.