Tauranga Māori issue warning to boaties and skiers

By Wena Harawira

There’s been more angry protest in Tauranga. Earlier this month, housing developers were warned homes for a planned housing subdivision on Matakana Island would be burnt to the ground. 

Now residents of Matakana, Rangiwaea and Motuhoa Islands in Tauranga Harbour have boaties and water skiers in their sights.

“People leave fires burning, dump their rubbish, use our islands as toilets, pinch our gas and gear, and have no regard for other boat users,” said Ngaraima Taingahue, who lives on Rangiwaea island.

She's making a submission on behalf of the island's people against another planned ski lane at Ōtapu between Rangiwaea and Matakana Islands at a review of the BOP Regional Council navigation bylaws. 

But this time, islanders are issuing a warning that old vehicles, nets and other barriers could be used to obstruct boaties and skiers if their behaviour doesn’t improve.

“We’re hōhā with the fact that they compromise the safety of everybody for their thrill-seeking activities,” she said.

Submissions to the BOP Regional Council review of navigation bylaws will be held at the ASB Arena, Mt Maunganui.