Review of Māori media raises concerns for Te Mātāwai

By Talisa Kupenga

Te Mātāwai is concerned about the government's Māori broadcast sector review because it did not have input into developing its scope.

The review, announced by the Minister for Māori Development this week, will assess Māori Television, Te Māngai Pāho and the Māori Radio Collective.

It appears the Crown is reviewing the Crown when it comes to the review.

Te Mātāwai CEO Te Atarangi Whiu says, "By the time we were notified the horse had already bolted.  What did Te Mātāwai think of the terms of reference?  Well, we didn't get a chance to have a say."

Te Mātāwai is responsible for providing co-leadership and oversight of Māori Television.

Whiu says, "Māori and government need to work together.  It's not for the government to tell Te Mātāwai what to do."

Māori Development Minister Nanaia Mahuta says, "They will be able to share their thoughts but what I want to see from the review is an idea of what direction government will take."

The minister says the review is about getting her house in order first.

"We have had discussions.  They know this is one of the areas to be reviewed but the overarching goal is to revitalise the Māori language and how we will come together to do that.”

Whiu says, "We hope the minister will have at the back of her mind when making moves to do with the Māori Broadcast sector that Te Mātāwai be considered in the first instance."

This review will also feed into the review of the Maori Language Act 2016- due to take place next year.