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Ron Mark, Chester Borrows go Eye to Eye with Gangs

Eye to Eye with Willie Jackson

‘Ban them. Treat them as domestic terrorists,for that is what they have become’ - hard hitting words from New Zealand First MP Ron Mark in light of the tragic killing of Wanganui toddler Jhia Te Tua.

After a week of condemning all gangs as criminals and terrorists, Maori Current Affairs host Willie Jackson brings Mark eye to eye with current Black Power member Sam Utatao and former Wanganui gang leader Willie McGregor, Wanganui MP Chester Borrows and Maori Party MP Dr Pita Sharples.

Willie McGregor who now counsels patched members in Wanganui says outlawing gangs will only make them appear more attractive to wannabe gangsters. He says what happened in Wanganui was the result of a sick idea and too much bravado hyped up with marijuana and alcohol.

“They will be scared shitless – the boys inside will be waiting for them and where does it end? It will never end.”

However Maori Party Co-Leader Dr Pita Sharples who’s been accused of being a ‘gang lover’ has initiated a national gang leaders forum to start dialogue to curb gang violence in South Auckland. He believes change can happen.

“If you want to change gang culture you have to change the leader’s views and their culture. We’ve actually got to change the culture”.

Black Power spokesperson Sam Utatao says every gang president he knows wants change.

“The stance of gangs is whanaungatanga – it’s a whanau unit. A lot of the gangs are trying to be productive members of society. They need a chance”.

But National MP for Wanganui Chester Borrows says gang members are dangerous criminals and shouldn’t be trusted.

“If gang members were serious about change, they would stop crowing about their exploits”.

Borrows is spearheading a proposed ban on gang insignia. He says the government has been too soft on gangs.

“They have taken no drastic steps towards prevention and cure – it always takes a horrific event like this then this government promises it will do something, then times goes by and nothing gets done.”

Watch Eye to Eye this Saturday for a show down between politicians and gang affiliates.

Eye to Eye with Willie Jackson, TV1, Saturday 0930am


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