October 20, 2022
Opinion: Tamihere still waiting for Charities commission decision
OPINION: It is a shame that I am not currently running in a political campaign because the amount of press I am getting from the NZ Herald is priceless.
However, it is a shame that they are intent on creating clickbait rather than being more focused on what actually constitutes real news and not fake news.
We are currently in negotiations with the Charities Commission who have not made a decision regarding the inflammatory allegations being made by NZ Herald reporter Matt Nippert and editor Murray Kirkness.
Mr Kirkness is correct when he says this matter needs to be settled, and I agree because it has been going for far too long. Should their decision be made against us, we will contest it.
I cannot be more transparent than this. We are honest. We surface our intentions to use Māori money to support our Māori right to sit at the table of democracy in Aotearoa.
As a Māori I am well versed at defending myself and the organisations I work for, something I doubt would be necessary if I was non-Māori. Do you think we would be stupid enough to brighten the already existent spotlight that is constantly on us when it comes to money?
If the naysayers like Mr Kirkness and Mr Nippert paused for one moment to stop slapping each other on the back, they could look at the funding of other political parties like National, Labour, ACT and The Green’s. There are hundreds of thousands of dollars donated to those groups, anonymously under the $15,000 cap. There’s a story for you, yet no one bothers to even scratch the surface of that let alone really dig it out.
The real issue Mr Kirkness is accountability, transparency and honesty. We will continue to use Māori money to advance Māori matters regardless of what and how the white folk at the NZ Herald frame us Māori.
The spotlight remains on not just myself, but all Māori get besmirched with these stories that are not so cleverly disguised as personal attacks. It’s how racism plays out in Aotearoa. I never wandered into the political and media arena to increase my circle of friends, I did it to highlight and change the blatant discrepancies Māori have been facing for far too long, knowing full well it was going to cause targeting.
It is refreshing to see the NZ Herald editor, Murray Kirkness agrees with me about changing
electoral laws to force all political parties to fully disclose the source of all funds. That is a no-brainer.
What is obvious right now to everyone, including the NZ Herald as Mr Nippert reported this fact in his piece dated September 29, is that the Te Pāti Māori is polling well which would suggest we could hold the balance of power after next year’s election. And as president of Te Pāti Māori, well that makes me the number one pin-up boy on their office dartboard.
John Tamihere is a former Labour Cabinet Minister and Chief Executive of Whānau Ora and West Auckland Urban Māori organisation Te Whānau o Waipareira.