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Turia Questions Ellis' Publicity Stunt

Thursday 15 November 2007

Turia Questions Ellis's Publicity Stunt

What is the difference between a wananga in the Ureweras and a "Covert Guerilla Operation' at Rangitoto for fun?

asks Tariana Turia

Environment Spokesperson for the Maori Party

Questions have been asked about a "covert operation" involving explosives, targeting Te Rangi-i-totongia-ai-te-ihu-o-Tamatekapua, the largest and most recent volcano in the Auckland Volcanic field.

"It interests me how everyone is so quick to laugh this bizarre act off as a 'publicity stunt' while for the last month the nation has been paralyzed with fear from the impact of 'Operation Eight' - a covert operation alleging 'para-military training camps' were held in the Urewera Valley" said Tariana Turia, environment spokesperson for the Maori Party.

"Today's press release from director Marc Ellis' even went as far as to describe the simulated eruption as part of a "guerrilla marketing stunt" said Mrs Turia.

"Rangitoto is a unique natural environment - distinctive not only as a volcanic landform, but because it holds the largest remaining pohutukawa forest in Aotearoa; as well as more than two hundred species of native trees and flowering plants, over forty types of ferns, orchids, and a home for many thousands of black-back gulls" said Mrs Turia.

"While I can appreciate the immediate feedback shows that people love a good gimmick, I have to question the impact of the explosive eruptions and the dramatic clouds of white smoke that appeared to be covering the island" said Mrs Turia.

"I can't help but think about Maunga Ruapehu, and what we, as Whanganui iwi, would think about such a prank happening on our ancestral mountain" said Mrs Turia.

"I'd be interested to know what the tangata whenua, Nga Tai and Ngati Paoa, thought about this guerrilla marketing stunt" said Mrs Turia. "Who gave the authority and the legal permission for Rangitoto Island to be treated in this way?".

"While everyone loves a good joke, I'd like to know how funny the Department of Conservation, Police, Emergency Services, and mana whenua of Rangitoto thought the early morning eruption really was" ended Mrs Turia.

ENDS

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