Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search

 

Community in shock over accusations against iwi leader

Community in shock over accusations against iwi leader Te Awanuiārangi Black

Gia Garrick, Political Reporter

Friends and colleagues of the prominent Māori leader Te Awanuiārangi Black have spoken of their shock and grief over his widow's accusations that he was a paedophile.

Te Awanuiārangi Black died aged 48 with organ failure in 2016. Photo: A screengrab from Māori Television

In an extraordinary live video, a distraught Anihera Black said her late husband had been abused as a child and had gone on to be a predator himself.

She encouraged any of his victims to come forward and speak.

"Those good deeds Awa did for individuals will live on in the memory of their lifetimes. However the pain and suffering he caused others may live on for generations to come if things are left unsaid."

Mrs Black sat at the top of Mount Maunganui as she struggled through the statement she said is from her and her kids.

"The man who I thought had mana and dignity, was loyal, generous, kind, faithful, had integrity. That was not who he was behind his clay mask.

Mr Black was a regional councillor and Māori Party candidate. He died from organ failure after a short time in hospital in 2016.

He also held roles with the Māori Language Commission, Te Wānanga o Raukawa and the Tauranga Moana Iwi Leaders' Group.

Mr Black's former colleague at the Bay of Plenty Regional Council, Arapeta Tahana, said he watched the video with his partner.

In an extraordinary live video, a distraught Anihera Black said her late husband had been abused as a child and had gone on to be a predator himself. Photo: Facebook

"We were very much surprised, in fact in disbelief. It just really didn't align with the person that we knew and our experiences of him.

"We found him a really loving man, who cared about his community, cared about people, and we had quite a close relationship with him."

Mr Tahana was elected to the Māori seat Okurei in 2013, the same year Awanui Black was elected to the Mauao seat.

He said they helped each other through a lot.

"In the last year or so we became quite close personal friends. He'd been quite helpful for me in terms of dealing with some depression and some challenges I was having and I'd like to think likewise me with him.

"In those final six months he was in quite a sad place."

Mr Black also twice ran as a candidate for the Māori Party.

'Pretty shocked'

Former co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell says he had known Mr Black a long time, and felt a range of emotions seeing the video.

"Pretty shocked, taken aback, sad, angry. Felt sorry for Ani and the family. But also concerned around the accusations and hope they will be taken to the police so they can investigate."

He said he had spoken to a number of people in the community who he and Mr Black both knew well, and they were all in a state of shock at the accusations.

"Sure there's some issues within whānau, that happens all the time. But in respect to issues of paedophilia and child rings and so on - that takes it to another level. Not one person I've spoken to can verify that."

But Mr Flavell wants the police to investigate so either Mr Black's name can be cleared, or the truth can be found out.

Police have released a statement saying they were aware of the video, and would be seeking further information about the allegations.

Labour's MP based in the East Coast, Kiri Allan, said this was going to impact people in many different ways.

"I don't think this is the right time to take sides, so to speak. But to say that when somebody who feels powerless, takes their power and stands up to speak when she sees an injustice... we as a community need to wrap around her.

"I think it's important to acknowledge the courage that she's shown."


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Eric Zuesse: U.S. Empire: Biden And Kerry Gave Orders To Ukraine’s President

Eric Zuesse, originally posted at Strategic Culture On May 19th, an implicit international political warning was issued, but it wasn’t issued between countries; it was issued between allied versus opposed factions within each of two countries: U.S. and Ukraine. ... More>>

Binoy Kampmark: Budget Cockups In The Time Of Coronavirus: Reporting Errors And Australia’s JobKeeper Scheme

Hell has, in its raging fires, ringside seats for those who like their spreadsheets. The seating, already peopled by those from human resources, white collar criminals and accountants, becomes toastier for those who make errors with those spreadsheets. ... More>>


The Dig - COVID-19: Just Recovery

The COVID-19 crisis is compelling us to kick-start investment in a regenerative and zero-carbon future. We were bold enough to act quickly to stop the virus - can we now chart a course for a just recovery? More>>

The Conversation: Are New Zealand's New COVID-19 Laws And Powers Really A Step Towards A Police State?

Reaction to the New Zealand government’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic and resultant lockdown has ranged from high praise to criticism that its actions were illegal and its management chaotic. More>>


Keith Rankin: Universal Versus Targeted Assistance, A Muddled Dichotomy

The Commentariat There is a regular commentariat who appear on places such as 'The Panel' on Radio New Zealand (4pm on weekdays), and on panels on television shows such as Newshub Nation (TV3, weekends) and Q+A (TV1, Mondays). Generally, these panellists ... More>>


Binoy Kampmark: Welcome Deaths: Coronavirus And The Open Plan Office

For anybody familiar with that gruesome manifestation of the modern work place, namely the open plan office, the advent of coronavirus might be something of a relief. The prospects for infection in such spaces is simply too great. You are at risk from ... More>>

Caitlin Johnstone: Do You Consent To The New Cold War?

The world's worst Putin puppet is escalating tensions with Russia even further, with the Trump administration looking at withdrawal from more nuclear treaties in the near future. In addition to planning on withdrawing from the Open Skies Treaty ... More>>


Binoy Kampmark: Why Thinking Makes It So: Donald Trump’s Obamagate Fixation

The “gate” suffix has been wearing thin since the break-in scandal that gave it its birth. Since Watergate, virtually anything dubious and suggestive, and much more besides, is suffixed. Which brings us to the issue of President Donald Trump’s ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Ethics (and Some Of The Economics) Of Lifting The Lockdown

As New Zealand passes the half-way mark towards moving out of Level Four lockdown, the trade-offs involved in life-after-lockdown are starting to come into view. All very well for National’s finance spokesperson Paul Goldsmith to claim that “The number one priority we have is to get out of the lockdown as soon as we can”…Yet as PM Jacinda Ardern pointed out a few days ago, any crude trade-off between public health and economic well-being would be a false choice... More>>


Binoy Kampmark: Brutal Choices: Anders Tegnell And Sweden’s Herd Immunity Goal

If the title of epidemiological czar were to be created, its first occupant would have to be Sweden’s Anders Tegnell. He has held sway in the face of sceptics and concern that his “herd immunity” approach to COVID-19 is a dangerous, and breathtakingly ... More>>


 
 
 
 
 


 
 
 
  • PublicAddress
  • Pundit
  • Kiwiblog