Lakes DHB admits fault in sacking Māori support service

Lakes DHB says it could have done better following the sacking of Rotorua Hospital’s Māori support service.

Te Arawa iwi Ngāti Whakaue met yesterday to discuss how to deal with last Friday’s eviction of Hunga Manaaki.

The iwi is disappointed in the DHB’s actions and is calling into question the competency of the DHB’s senior management.

Spokesperson for Ngāti Whakaue, Kingi Biddle, told Kawe Kōrero Reporters the consensus among those at yesterday’s hui was to demand that the Māori support service be reinstated.

Kingi says, “We did have a relationship in the early days with the hospital, however since the new board was elected it's really hard to communicate or have any sort of dialogue with them.”

In a media response to Kawe Kōrero Reporters, Lake’s DHB says it “acknowledges that in respect of the contract ending last Friday, we should have done things better.”

The land in which the hospital sits was also gifted to the Crown by Ngāti Whakaue.

Kingi says, “The location where the hospital is situated is at Mount Pukeroa. It's a prime piece of land.

“It was the home of the chiefs and great leaders of Ngāti Whakaue.”

“So that piece of land is very important to us of Ngāti Whakaue,” he says.

Lakes DHB Chief Executive Ron Durnham says he is arranging a time to speak with Mana Whenua.

Until then, Ngāti Whakaue will be taking their voices to the streets in protest on Wednesday morning.

The protest will kick off at 10am on Arawa St, head up Pukeroa past the hospital and conclude on the grounds of Te Papaiouru Marae in Ohinemutu.