Indigenous World Water Day 2007
21 March 2007
below is today's press release from Aotearoa Educators about Indigenous World Water Day, 22 March; links to more information; and details of the tino rangatiratanga symposium to be held in Wellington tomorrow.
A Tino Rangatiratanga symposium held at Victoria University's Te Herenga Waka marae on Thursday 22nd March will recognise Indigenous World Water Day and coincides with actions by Indigenous peoples globally.
"Maori are demonstrating their concerns over water by marking Indigenous World Water Day" says Aotearoa Educators spokesperson Maraea Teepa.
"Maori are in the same position as many other Indigenous peoples around the world - fighting the commodification of water. The government's Sustainable Water Programme of Action shows a commitment to sustainable water use, which is all well and good, but is also about encouraging trading of water rights. But does the government own water? Evidence suggests hapu and iwi continue to have customary rights to water and exercise tino rangatiratanga over waterways. The government needs to acknowledge that they do not have exclusive ownership of water, must not act unilaterally to decide what will happen with it, and should not in any event be making it into a commodity. This has long been the call from Maori - even the government's own report on consultation with Maori stressed this.
"Maori are marking this day with other Indigenous peoples around the world to show that we care about water, do not want it commodified and want the inherent customary title rights of Indigenous peoples to be recognised to water."
Press Release: Aotearoa Educators.
The Indigenous World Water Day Call to Action came from the Indigenous Environmental Network in the United States, information about the Day is on the Water is life page.
Information about the government's Sustainable Water Programme of Action.
Calls for tino rangatiratanga continue in Aotearoa, however people have very different ideas about whether hapu and iwi still have it, are regaining it or whether it simply needs a little reaffirming. This symposium brings together academics from different disciplines to share their reflections on the state of tino rangatiratanga within their areas of history, politics, performing arts, linguistics, and science. Speakers: Peter Adds, Tino rangatiratanga tonu? Taranaki claims experiences; Maria Bargh, Tino rangatiratanga – Water under the bridge?; Teurikore Biddle, Frameworks for maintaining tino rangatiratanga in performing arts; Tonga Karena, Te Tino Rangatiratanga o te Reo; and Ocean Mercier, Physics: A Final Frontier? From 1pm to 3pm at Te Herenga Waka Marae, Victoria University, 46 Kelburn Parade, Wellington. All are welcome, to find out more contact Dr Maria Bargh, email or tel 04-463 5465.