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Maori Language Broadcasting - Timeline

24 July 2001

Maori Language Broadcasting Developments

Chronology of Key Events

1960-1970 Emergence of Mäori language advocacy groups – Te Reo Mäori Society and Nga Tamatoa.

1973 Presentation of Mäori language petition to Parliament by Nga Tamatoa.

1980 Television New Zealand screen ‘Koha’ – a 30 minute Mäori magazine programme.

1986 Report of the Waitangi Tribunal on the Te Reo Maori Claim (WAI 11). The Tribunal finds that te reo Mäori is a taonga guaranteed protection under Article II of the Treaty of Waitangi.

1987 Mäori Language Act and establishment of the Mäori Language Commission.

1988 Crown amends Broadcasting Act 1976 to restructure New Zealand broadcasting and creates State Owned Enterprises.

1989 Broadcasting Act

1991 May : High Court decision declines to grant relief in respect of radio assets but adjourns claim in respect of television assets to give the Crown the opportunity to submit a scheme designed to protect te reo Mäori if the assets were transferred.

July: Cabinet takes decision on Mäori broadcasting and undertakings given to the High Court to, amongst a number of things, the development of special purpose Mäori television.

Crown accepats that “the principles of the Treaty impose a continuing obligation on the Crown to take such active steps as are reasonable to assist in the preservation of the Mäori language by the use of both radio and television broadcasting”.

The High Court accepts the Crown’s undertakings and allows the transfer of television assets.

1992 Application to the Court of Appeal by New Zealand Mäori Council and Nga Kaiwhakapumau I te reo Mäori appealing the transfer of television assets.


1993 Appeal to the Privy Council dismissed but the Privy Council judgement stresses the previous undertakings given by the Crown to the Courts.

Broadcasting Amendment Act establishes Te Reo Whakapuaki Irirangi/Te Mangai Paho.

1994 Te Mangai Paho established.

1996 A joint Mäori/Crown working party on Mäori television is established. Report prepared recommending substantive developments in Mäori broadcasting policy (report one).

Second report of the Mäori/Crown working party on Mäori Broadcasting.

Implementation of Mäori television pilot in Auckland region – Aotearoa Mäori Televsion Network.

1997 Aotearoa Mäori Television Network ceases to operate.

National Mäori Organisations report on Mäori broadcasting.

Ministry of Commerce discussion document on Mäori television policy released.

Government reviews Te Mangai Paho and Mäori radio.

1998 Government agrees to the establishment of a Mäori Television Trust. An establishment working group is set up to develop a trust deed, advise on appointments procedures including appointment of initial trustees and advise on how the operation of the trust should be funded.

Te Reo Mäori Television Trust [Te Awhiorangi] established.

1999 Te Reo Mäori Television Trust [Te Awhiorangi] presents business case to Ministers. Purchase agreement signed by the (then) Minister of Communications in December.

New government puts transfer of assets transfer of funds and assets for new channel on hold in order to further consider options for Mäori television.

2000 Cabinet agrees that the establishment of Mäori television channel is a government priority within the Mäori broadcasting policy area.

Responsibility for Mäori broadcasting policy advice is transferred from the Ministry of Commerce to Te Puni Kökiri.

Minister of Mäori Affairs invites a group of Mäori broadcasting experts to make recommendations on Mäori broadcasting. The Mäori Broadcasting Advisory committee (MBAC) presents its report to the Minister of Mäori Affairs in October 2000.

2001 Prime Minister and the Minister of Mäori Affairs direct officials to consider MBAC report and provide further advice on options for establishing a viable Mäori television service.

Discussions begin with key Mäori stakeholders.

Cabinet takes decision to establish a Mäori televsion service, which will be provided for in legislation.

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