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Funding Concerns Of Ex-Maori TV Director Unfounded

Wednesday, 24 October 2001

Maori Affairs Minister, Parekura Horomia said he is disappointed about the resignation of Hekia Parata as an interim director of the Maori television service, especially with her unfounded concerns about funding.

Hekia Parata was one of the four directors appointed by the Electoral College to the board of the Maori Television service earlier this year. The four, along with three Crown appointed directors, had their first meeting early this month.

Mr Horomia has spoken with Ms Parata about the reasons for her decision.

“I have always believed that we need the best people for the job, regardless of who they are, or their political leanings. Ms Parata has already indicated she has other interests to pursue. While I am disappointed to hear about this resignation, it is better for changes to occur sooner rather than later.”

Mr Horomia said the level of funding for the Maori television service has never changed and it is significantly more than that set aside by the previous government The total funding dedicated to Maori television is:

Maori television programmes:
2001/02 $29.9m
2002/03 $34.291m
2003/04 $41.683m
2004/05 $49.074m

MTV operations and transmission:
2001/02 $3.863m
2002/03 $6m
2003/04 $6m
2004/05 $6m

Total Maori television:
2001/02 $33.763m
2002/03 $40.291m
2003/04 $47.683m
2004/05 $55.074m


Funding will continue to be allocated by Te Mangai Paho and NZ On Air. While it is envisaged that the Maori Television service will have some capability to make in-house programmes, it is likely that most of the new programmes broadcast on the new service will be produced by independent producers. TVNZ will continue to receive funding from Te Mangai Paho and NZ on Air to produce and broadcast at least its existing level of in-house production.

The Minister of Maori Affairs Mr Horomia said he was impressed by the makeup of the original board of directors, which brought together a mixture of strong industry skills, strong governance and commercial background, with strong Maori credibility too.

“I am confident that the Electoral College will find another replacement of equal calibre to Ms Parata. The directors have a very heavy workload to get the service on air by mid next year. That workload will be increased by the intense scrutiny that they will be subjected to during the establishment process. I look forward to their progress,” said Mr Horomia.

Ends

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