Allegations of misspending by the Kohanga Reo National Trust are causing whanau to think twice about enrolling their tamariki in kohanga reo, an iwi leader says.
The trust's commercial arm, Te Pataka Ohanga, is being investigated by the Serious Fraud Office over allegations of financial mismanagement. The Department of Internal Affairs is also investigating.
Tauranga Moana iwi leader Awanui Black said it was not easy for whanau to differentiate between the Kohanga Reo National Trust in the media and the kohanga reo down the street.
The controversy was having a negative impact and was detracting from the real issue of Te Reo preservation, Mr Black said.
The issue needed to be resolved soon, he said.