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Minister defends shifting housing funds to TPK

Published: 1:32PM Wednesday March 18, 2015

  •  (Source: ONE News)
    Source: ONE News

The Minister for Māori Development and Whānau Ora is defending his decision to put money secured for Māori housing projects into his ministry to administer.

Te Ururoa Flavell gave clear instructions to his ministry, Te Puni Kōkiri.

“Mārama tonu taku kōrero ki TPK; te pūtea, tukuna ki te iwi. Kāore i kō atu, kāore i kō mai.”

However, Whānau Ora commissioning agency Te Pou Matakana says it's their responsibility.

“Don’t tell me that a government agency is going to be more effective than Te Pou Matakana,” says Te Pou Matakana chairperson, Merepeka Raukawa-Tait.

“They haven’t been effective in the past and that’s the reality. The expectation of our people these days is that they do not want to go to a government department. Surely the minister has to understand that.”

Raukawa-Tait claims the minister seems to have little faith in their ability to distribute housing funding.

“If he’s the Minister of Whānau Ora then support the people who are absolutely committed to making Whānau Ora a success.

“Te Pou Matakana, the board, our chief executive - we’re working hard. We’re working hard for our whānau and he needs to know we want leadership from him, leadership that is supportive of us in our mahi.”

The amount of funding is to the tune of $7m a year, over three years. The minister says he wants Te Pou Matakana to focus on their core purpose.

“I tēnei wā kei a rātou ko te $50m kei roto i te pūtea mō te Whānau Ora nō reira ehara i te mea kāore i te tino whakapono ki a rātou.

“Ko tōna mutunga mai i tukuna mai ki au, ka mutu, ko te tumanako ia kia noho herea nei ki roto i te tāhuhu o te MBIE kia tukuna ki ngā whānau e tatari nei.”

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