November 03, 2020
Jackson well-paced to complete Maori Affairs devolution
A former deputy secretary for Māori Affairs says incoming Māori Development Minister Willie Jackson needs to complete the process of devolution that was promised when the department was scrapped 30 years ago.
Neville Baker says the organisation Mr Jackson headed before entering parliament, Manukau Urban Māori Authority, was set up as part of that devolution strategy, so he understands the issues.
He wants to see co-location of government agencies with Māori organisations, more devolution of resources and finance to Māori and iwi authorities, and for Mr Jackson to manage how other government departments work with Māori.
"Part of the role of devolution into the Iwi Transition Agency was for that entity to actually make sure that other government agencies were delivering properly to our people and I think if you have a look at all the sectors, that hasn't been happening. There are partnerships and there have been attempts to work with us but they are not real in terms of the resources being devolved so we can actually make decisions and make the effort to set in place programmes to keep people out of prison and so forth," Mr Baker says.
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