Fox wants Te Ara Mauwhare initiative ramped up

By Mānia Clarke

Former Māori Party co-leader Marama Fox says she supports the Te Ara Mauwhare initiative, which helps low-income families into home-ownership. 

However, she says it's a shadow of what she and former co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell initiated.

Fox is elated that Te Tihi o Ruahine Whānau Ora Alliance will trial renting to buy for their whānau, but says more can be done.

“Nanaia [Mahuta] needs to do more to leverage policies like Working for Families, accommodation supplement, income-related rent subsidy, that is only paying the mortgage for someone else,” she says.

The former politician has learnt first-hand from the pitfalls of housing, having recently cleared a $160,000 debt owed to creditors for her affordable housing project, following her exit from politics.

“You must thoroughly research the investors who say they will help you, who say they have the funds to build those homes because, despite what you want, you must first know where the funds are.”

Four other Māori groups are trialling the initiative, Te Taiwhenua o Heretaunga, Port Nicholson Block Settlement Trust, Te Rūnanganui o Ngāti Porou, and the Chatham Islands Housing Partnership Trust.

Te Kāea contacted Mahuta’s office for comment, however she was unavailable.