December 07, 2021
Trust cave-in on Waitangi Day “horrendous”
Taitokerau leader Shane Jones says the Waitangi National Trust’s decision to scrap in-person Waitangi Day events at the Treaty Grounds is more about protecting the Prime Minister from anti-vaxxers than Māori from Covid.
Anti-vaxxers and anti-government elements took over this year’s He Whakaputanga commemoration at the lower Te Tii Marae.
Mr Jones says that could have weighed on the board.
“I think it’s a horrible outcome. I’m astounded the National Waitangi Trust has rolled over. I presume it’s done it because it will be very difficult to manage the Prime Minister’s entourage up there. I suspect they did it because they are concerned that when the politicians arrive, it would be a magnet for people who are and who are either displeased or distressed about the Covid regulations and want to discredit the Prime Minister,” he says.
Shane Jones expects there will be events at Te Tii Marae, and says rather than over-reacting, people should work to increase vaccination rates so the north can learn to live with the virus.