3 Apr 2014

Govt given assurance over Numa

9:45 am on 3 April 2014

The Ministry of Maori Development Te Puni Kokiri is assuring the Government a new branch of the National Urban Maori Authority(Numa) is the right organisation to lead Whanau Ora in the North Island.

Te Pou Matakana outbid four other applications; it comes under the umbrella of the authority, which is chaired by Willie Jackson who along with Radio Live co-host John Tamihere was taken off air last year because of controversial comments about sex abuse.

In December, Whanau Ora Minister Tariana Turia told Te Manu Korihi she had had calls from people expressing concerns about Mr Jackson's role, because the Whanau Ora process was about family and well-being.

But Te Puni Kokiri chief executive Michelle Hippolite says it has picked the right organisation. The ministry is satisfied with the set-up of Te Pou Matakana, she says, and it meets the criteria for the role.

Ms Hippolite says she has given government ministers an assurance the organisation is capable of leading Whanau Ora.

It has 90 days to set up, including appointing a chief executive and formulating ways of delivering Whanau Ora.

Mrs Turia says Te Pou Matakana will help whanau build their own pathways, take back control of their lives and set goals for the future. She says National Urban Maori Authority accumulated years of experience and expertise in supporting and uplifting families.