December 20, 2017
TVNZ plan makes Maori manuhiri
An independent Maori producer says Television New Zealand’s decision to reduce the job of commissioning Maori and Pacific programming to a part time role shows Maori are gradually being pushed from the state broadcaster.
Quinton Hita says when TVNZ closed its Maori department in 2014 and outsourced programmes like Marae and Waka Huia to independent producers, he expected some sort of trade off with more Maori programming in prime time.
Instead it reduced commissioning even further, sacking the previous commissioner and turning the job into a 16 hour a week commissioning consultant role.
Mr Hita says an organisations’s values are reflected in its structure.
"If you’ve got a role that's only a part time role, it doesn't have the access to management structures, executive decisions and everything else you expect from that role yet all of the responsibilities that are part of that role are put on your shoulders. That's sort of the equivalent of having a whare and saying 'you can hang your photos in here for half a day and take them home and we will see you tomorrow.' In that case you are not tangata whenua, you are manuhiri. I think that is an issue, a problem," he says.
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