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Commitment to Māori language revitalisation

13 November 2007

Commitment to Māori language revitalisation paying dividends

Māori Affairs Minister Parekura Horomia today welcomed the results of an audit of the Māori Language Strategy which acknowledged significant increases in the number of Māori using the Māori language.

The Māori Language Strategy is a multi-agency 25-year project which set out in October 2003 with the aim of revitalising the Māori language. The six lead agencies include: Te Puni Kōkiri (TPK), Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Māori (the Māori Language Commission), Te Māngai Pāho (the Māori Broadcasting Funding Agency), the Ministry of Culture and Heritage, the Ministry of Education and the National Library of New Zealand.

The Office of the Auditor General today tabled in Parliament an audit of the effectiveness of these six lead agencies and made a series of recommendations. Mr Horomia says the audit report provides valuable insights that will feed into a full review of the Māori Language Strategy scheduled for 2008.

“The Māori language is vital to Māori cultural development and contributes to New Zealand’s unique national identity. This government remains committed to the Māori Language Strategy and the revitalisation of the Māori language.

“As the Auditor General notes, there has been a significant increase in the number of Māori adults who can speak, read, write and understand te reo Māori. The 2006 Māori Language Survey found 52 per cent of Māori adults had some level of Māori language speaking proficiency – up 10 percent from 2001; and 67 per cent had some level of Māori language listening proficiency – an 8 per cent increase.

“I welcome this latest report. It provides lead agencies with useful and constructive feedback that will help to further improve their performance in regard to the strategy. I have been advised by TPK that they agree with all the recommendations and have developed a work programme with the other lead agencies to implement all of them.”

ENDS

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