De­fend­ing war­dens

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS -

Ed­i­tor,

This is an an­swer to the ar­ti­cle con­cern­ing Maori War­dens in the Porirua City area [KMN, Jan­uary 15].

The fol­low­ing are pro­cesses that need to be ad­dressed. First and fore­most, ev­ery trainee needs to be­long to a Maori Com­mit­tee meet­ing in the area they live in, if you don’t you can­not be­come a Maori war­den.

Sec­ond, train­ing is pro­vided by your Maori Com­mit­tee or a war­ranted war­den. This a per­son who has a war­rant and a badge au­tho­rised by the Min­is­ter of Maori Af­fairs. If your war­rant has ex­pired, your Maori Com­mit­tee will process through Welling­ton District Maori Coun­cil, then you will be is­sued with an­other war­rant.

There are in the Porirua East Maori Com­mit­tee seven war­ranted war­dens, 10 trainees, five from Porirua Maori Com­mit­tee (Ngati Toa) and five from Porirua East.

The process of nom­i­nat­ing peo­ple to be­come war­dens is done by Maori Com­mit­tees, not po­lice.

Mrs Au­gust needs to get her facts right. Mrs Au­gust and her com­mit­tee are po­lice vol­un­teers au­tho­rised by se­nior con­sta­ble Mike Ta­here in 2009. Be­ing a po­lice vol­un­teer and a Maori War­den is not in any­one’s best in­ter­est, es­pe­cially mem­bers of the pub­lic.

Po­lice have their own kau­papa and we, as Maori War­dens, know what that is. Maori War­dens try to stop trou­ble be­fore it starts. We are in court with our peo­ple if we are asked to help.

There are also bound­aries where a Maori War­den can work and where they can’t, per­mis­sion needs to be sanc­tioned by the Maori Com­mit­tees in the ar­eas con­cerned.

Mrs Au­gust and her group should be taken to task by the se­nior sergeant at the Com­mu­nity Polic­ing Base at Can­nons Creek. To my knowl­edge they are not Maori War­dens and should not be im­per­son­at­ing one.

Whether John Price had au­tho­rised Mrs Au­gust and her team to be Maori War­dens, the author­ity does not be­long to the po­lice, nor Tepuni Kokiri.

I don’t know how many times I have writ­ten to the Kapi-Mana News in an­swer to peo­ple who imag­ine do­ing any­thing else to help our peo­ple. Kapimana Maori War­dens have worked with Porirua po­lice in the past and we do have a good re­la­tion­ship with them.

When a per­son says they are a Maori War­den, ask them to pro­duce their badge and war­rant. (Let­ter abridged)

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