Moko, Are the Maori Leaders and Politicians Part of the Problem?

Moko Rangitoheriri

Moko Rangitoheriri

by Gavin

The silence from Maori leaders and politicians on the death of Moko has been deafening. Are they part of the problem? I am reminded of the death of the Kahui twins and how the family gathered to protect the perpetrators in a wall of silence that enabled them to avoid prosecution. Are we seeing the same level of silence now?

To solve a problem, there has to be an admission that there is a problem that needs solving. Only then can solutions be sought and implemented. Until the leaders of Maori society admit there is a problem, I suspect Moko will not be the last child to die at the hands of caregivers. And, we will be just as outraged when the next child is killed by those closest to them as nothing changes.

I would have thought that leaders would want to lead, and take a stand against such evil behaviour. That they might publicly take a stand, and face the truth about this issue that infects their society in disproportionate numbers. Perhaps they might come out from their hiding places and speak to their people and the rest of New Zealand society.

Or, are we seeing the darker side of tribalism with allegiance to the tribe and family being stronger and more important than allegiance to the wider society of this nation, and protection for the most vulnerable? Are the leaders of Maori society doing what the family of the Kahui twins have done and condoning violence by their collective silence? Why is Alan Duff the only leader with enough guts to raise his head above the parapet?

I would like to challenge the collective Maori leadership of this country to be what they claim to be, and lead their people. I wonder if anything will happen.

A commenter the other day suggested a boycott by the NZRFU of the haka until change some change happens. Perhaps, that is what we should as do as symbolic gesture to say “enough is enough” and “child lives matter”.

But, time is running out, and quickly. The collective consciousness will move on quickly to the next topic of concern and Moko will be relegated to history like all the children before him. Until the next one comes along, and collective outrage is inflamed again, followed by marches, speeches and placards. Then the cycle repeats once more.

 

 


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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story.  And when he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet.   Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet, and as a result he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist that takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him.  But you can’t ignore him.

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