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Tai Rāwhiti iwi select member for Te Mātāwai

Tai Rāwhiti iwi select member for Te Mātāwai

Iwi from Tai Rāwhiti have selected Jeremy Tātere MacLeod to be a member of Te Mātāwai – the new organisation set to lead the revitalisation of te reo Māori on behalf of iwi and Māori.

Jeremy (Ngāti Kahungunu, Te Arawa, Ngāti Raukawa te au ki te Tonga, Rangitāne, Waikato, Te Āti Awa, Ngāi Tahu) 29, has been employed as Director of Te Reo, Tikanga and Mātauranga at Ngāti Kahungunu Iwi Inc. for 6 years.

Selwyn Parata chairman of Te Rūnanganui o Ngāti Porou and spokesperson for the selection group, said a high calibre of candidates had been nominated for the position and had been treated with honor and respect. He said Jeremy had a lot to offer Te Mātāwai.

“He’s young and actively working with his iwi to retain and promote their reo. He is a practitioner of te reo and he and his partner are good role models for young whānau. We are confident he will be able to represent all the iwi in Tai Rāwhiti,” he said.

“We have also agreed to establish a ‘Tuarā’, representative of all Tai Rāwhiti Iwi to support Jeremy,” Mr Parata said.

Te Tai Rāwhiti is the first of seven iwi clusters established under the new Te Ture mō Te Reo Māori (Māori Language Act) to appoint a member to Te Mātāwai.

Mr Parata said iwi from Tai Rāwhiti had been meeting together since the initial hui at Te Poho-o-Rāwiri where former Māori Affairs Minister Hon Pita Sharples presented the proposed bill.

Jeremy said it was an honour to be selected and he hoped to bring commitment, determination and innovation to Te Mātāwai. As a second language learner himself, Jeremy is well aware of the challenges and barriers faced by second language learners striving for fluency in te reo Māori. Having led the Ngāti Kahungunu Māori language revitalization strategy since 2010, Jeremy has spear-headed the review of the strategy in 2013 and has established several initiatives aimed at successfully revitalizing the language along with its unique Ngāti Kahungunu dialectal variations.

At present, Jeremy is leading a research project around the identification of unique tribal dialectal variations which will prove invaluable for iwi striving to retain their dialects.

Ngāti Kahungunu Iwi Inc. is pleased that Jeremy Tātere MacLeod has been nominated by the selection panel to represent Tai Rāwhiti iwi on Te Mātāwai and are sure that his skills and experience will be welcomed at the table.


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