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Ngahiwi Tomoana can suck eggs …

Tom Belford26 January 2014

And so can his Maori mates!

That’s how I understand the attitude of CHB Mayor Peter Butler.

But decide for yourself. Here are Butler’s exact words, as delivered in an email to his councillors last Friday:

“What I want to know is how many of Ngahiwi Tomoana’s mates are employed because of these four properties and when did you last see one of his mates swimming in the Waipawa or Tuki Tuki Rivers, let alone fishing in them!!!  If “The Dam” goes ahead he and his mates should be banned from any employment pertaining to it!!”

The “four properties” are four farming operations described earlier in Butler’s email, where he’s describing a ‘show and tell’ trip around the proposed CHB dam footprint he hosted to persuade HB Today’s reporter of the wisdom of the project.

In short, because Ngahiwi Tomoana, the elected chairman of Ngati Kahungunu, the largest iwi in Hawke’s Bay, has the conviction — audacity, as Butler sees it — to challenge the Regional Council’s proposed plans for the Tukituki catchment, bully Butler wants him and his mates blacklisted in retaliation.

There’s a pattern here. Butler attempted, unsuccessfully, to have me kicked off the stakeholders group established to advise HBRC on its Tukituki plans, when he decided I was too critical of the plans being presented. He tried to do it before I arrived at one of our stakeholder meetings … a real classy guy. Among his complaints, he said I didn’t represent anyone. A miscalculation!

NKKI has responded to Butler’s comments with admirable restraint. Here’s their media release:

“Ngāti Kahungunu Iwi is very disappointed at the negative comments of the Central Hawkes Bay Mayor Peter Butler regarding Iwi involvement with the Tukituki River and the Dam proposal.

He has said “If ‘The Dam’ goes ahead Ngahiwi Tomoana and his mates should be banned from any employment pertaining to it!”

For the last ten years we have supported wānanga for youth on water safety, guardianship, and whakapapa on the Tukituki river supported by the Police, Ngā Whenua Rahui (DoC), Water Safety NZ, Ministry of Primary Industries, Youth Quest Trust and Waka Moemoea Trust to name a few. This year the wānanga was attended by 102 youth, 30 mentors and 20 supporting experts.

All those that attended the Tukituki Board of Inquiry at Matahiwi marae were fed whitebait, flounders, eels and fish caught from the very waters that Kahungunu whānau are seeking to protect.
Ngāti Kahungunu Iwi invested over $16 million in 2013 purchasing Tautane Station located in Central Hawkes Bay/Tararua and have secured Taratahi Agricultural Training to provide training on site. We have a lifetime commitment to this region and that has never changed.

Can we trust this community leader to be the steward of $80 million of government money, $80 million of tax payers’ money and $80 million of investment money dispersing the benefits equitably?

Peter Butler has only singled out Māori and not mentioned or referred to Fish & Game, Forest & Bird or the Environmental Defence Society which strongly suggests his statements are race based, which is a disappointing statement from a leader.”

I will seek to have the Regional Council explicitly and publicly disassociate itself with Butler’s remarks and to immediately arrange a governance level meeting, as chairman Tomoana has requested, between HBRC Councillors and NKII … hopefully to avert a further meltdown in HBRC-Maori relations.

Tom Belford

P.S. And how is Butler handling this situation? Not by apologising for his appalling comments. Rather by trying to identify the “slimeball” who disclosed his remarks … looking for someone else to bully.

Tom Belford26 January 2014

9 responses to “Ngahiwi Tomoana can suck eggs …”

  1. Bill Sutton says:

    Peter Butler has unfortunately shown himself to be incompetent to be the Mayor of Central Hawke’s Bay, and I’m sure his remarks, sent to his councillors in Butler’s capacity as Mayor, will be a huge disappointment to many Hawke’s Bay people.

    The idea that you can state your mayoral views in writing to your councillors, but they should not be made known to the general public, is simply untenable.

    I suggest for the good of himself, his district, and the whole region, Mr Butler finds a way to publicly apologise.

  2. kelvyn says:

    The shifting sands of public participation in modern government processes and this Dam issue have exposed some old school local government people to public scrutiny they are totally unprepared for. It has taken them by surprise and they don’t seem able to respond to the new demands of community involvement. No matter if CHB Mayor Peter Butlers views are right or wrong, he should be nailed to the wall for his response to someone commenting on an issue they have every right to comment on. (Ngahiwi Tomoana) It is public participation in something that the public have a right to make choices on. CHB Mayor Peter Butler is not representing the interests of his constituents in a fair and impartial and respectful way. He should be stood down from any decision making process that may affect CHB residents.

  3. Barry Jones says:

    I think Butler is right why should a small minority have the right to demand defering a major project just because they havent had enough time to check out the recommendations put forward in good faith. Who do they think they are. Arnt they just NewZealanders like all of us or do they believe we (NewZealanders )owe them something. next they will be demanding payment for the water. Mark my words thats what they are after. I buy a fishing licence every year and have done for over fifty years,in fact I buy two a Taupo one as well. I want to be able to fish a beautiful lake closer than Taupo before I die. At the rate of progress due to so many demands Ill be well gone before the bulldozers even start up. Barry Jones.

  4. Stephanie Thomas says:

    Butler should indeed stand down as Mayor, he is an embarrassment to the people of CHB. That would be the honourable thing to do.

    Otherwise a vote of no confidence. He is a bully extraordinaire having seen him in action at pre local government election meetings last year. And most definitely a racist.

  5. Siena Denton says:

    Barry Jones your just another racist like that mayor.

    So, who cares that you ..”buy a fishing licence every year and have done for over fifty years,in fact I buy two a Taupo one as well”. Wow wee!

    Got your magnifying glasses on…Old Boy!

    “For the last ten years we have supported wānanga for youth on water safety, guardianship, and whakapapa on the Tukituki river supported by the Police, Ngā Whenua Rahui (DoC), Water Safety NZ, Ministry of Primary Industries, Youth Quest Trust and Waka Moemoea Trust to name a few. This year the wānanga was attended by 102 youth, 30 mentors and 20 supporting experts.

    All those that attended the Tukituki Board of Inquiry at Matahiwi marae were fed whitebait, flounders, eels and fish caught from the very waters that Kahungunu whānau are seeking to protect.

    Ngāti Kahungunu Iwi invested over $16 million in 2013 purchasing Tautane Station located in Central Hawkes Bay/Tararua and have secured Taratahi Agricultural Training to provide training on site. We have a lifetime commitment to this region and that has never changed”.

    I read that ”Slimeball’ leak upsets mayor’ in the NZ Herald and Tom is absolutely correct.

    That racist mayor is more concerned with who circulated his comments so the old cry baby is going to “stop writing his private weekly newsletter that had been only been sent to Central Hawke’s Bay councillors”.

    Who needs a “Slimeball” racist mayor and whether you like it or not Barry Jones, Aotearoa , all of it! Is totally Māori land and it is you who are the unwelcome overstayer.

  6. David Bosley says:

    If Mayor Butler is genuinely trying to find a slimeball -maybe he should take a look in a mirror!

  7. Richard says:

    Can you hear the banjos?

  8. Helen says:

    Siena Denton, by all means defend Maori rights to have a say and yes Barry Jones comments were a bit harsh, but your very own comment re all the land belonging to Maori is also racist and extreme. None of us own it, we are all just caretakers , equally responsible for looking after this gift of a beautiful fertile place to sustain human life for the future of all equally entitled New Zealanders. Virtually every single country in this entire world is made up of peoples from all over, after all, we all started from a small group of humans in one place. Everyone needs to get over it and move on as a untied community.

  9. Dean Hyde (Te Kauwhata) says:

    I’m surprised that anyone takes any notice of Peter Butler, I mean isn’t he the same local government candidate that fell foul of the law twice during his campaigning?
    He is after all nothing more than a red neck bully boy, sadly re-elected by the people of Central Hawkes Bay, as a past resident of the area I would have given them a little more credit.

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