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New Appointments To The Board Of Te Ohu Kaimoana

Media Release
17 January 2007

New Appointments To The Board Of Te Ohu Kaimoana

Two new directors have been appointed to the board of Te Ohu Kaimoana, the Maori Fisheries Trust.

Tukuroirangi Morgan, the chairman of Te Kawai Taumata, the committee formed to make appointments to the trust, announced that Rikirangi Gage, the chairman of Te Runanga o Te Whanau a Apanui, and Ngahiwi Tomoana, the chief executive of Ngati Kahungunu Iwi Incorporated (NKII) were new appointments to the board. Their positions are effective from beginning of February 2007 and they will serve a four-year term.

Two existing directors have also been re-appointed for a four-year term. The committee chose to retain the leadership of current deputy chairman Archie Taiaroa and board member Hon Koro Wetere. Both have served on the board since the inception of Te Ohu Kaimoana in November 2004, having previously acted as commissioners on the former Treaty of Waitangi Fisheries Commission – Mr Taiaroa since 1993 and Mr Wetere since 2000.

This is the first time that iwi themselves have appointed members to the board of Te Ohu Kaimoana. Since the interim Maori fisheries settlement with the Crown in 1989, all board members have been appointed by the Minister of Maori Affairs.

“This is an historic appointment and the first time that Maori themselves have decided who will represent their interests in the marine environment,” Mr Morgan said. “All iwi participated in the appointment of representatives to Te Kawai Taumata, which in turn chose the directors who would take Te Ohu Kaimoana into the future.”

Mr Morgan said Mr Gage and Mr Tomoana were both experienced in the fisheries environment.

Ngahiwi Tomoana has played an important role through the Treaty Tribes Coalition in the discussions over the development of the allocation method, has taken a lead in promoting Maori aquaculture for the wider Maori community and his iwi, and last year organised the first Maori Fisheries Conference in Napier. He has worked for the protection and enhancement of eel habitats both locally and nationally. Ngahiwi has served as chairman of NKII for 10 years.

Rikirangi Gage has served as a member of the Ministerial Advisory Committee for Oceans Policy, served as a board member for Te Papa for three years and represented the Treaty of Waitangi Fisheries Commission at the Convention on Biological Diversity in Argentina in 1996.

Te Kawai Taumata deputy chair, Naida Glavish, thanked the retiring director Dame Georgina Kirby for her contribution. “Dame Georgina has helped take Te Ohu Kaimoana through some important work. She is a tireless servant for Maori people and her experience and leadership was a valuable contribution.”

ENDS

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