Te Reo first for new bill

7:47 pm on 24 September 2015

The Te Reo Māori bill has been held up because Minister of Māori Development Te Ururoa Flavell wants to translate the piece of legislation into Māori, he says.

Leader of the Maori Party, Te Ururoa Flavell.

Te Ururoa Flavell Photo: RNZ / Alexander Robertson

The bill includes setting up a new body, Te Mātawai, which will lead and direct the Māori Language Commission, Te Māngai Pāho, and absorb the role of Te Pūtahi Paoho.

Mr Flavell said there were some details which needed fine-tuning before it would be introduced into the Parliament next year, including having the primary version of the bill in Māori and then in English.

"We've got a golden opportunity to reintroduce it back into the House in Māori language actually as dual bill," he said.

"It will be translated but the one that will have significance in law will be the Te Reo Māori version.

"There are other technical things that we're just tidying up to make sure we get it all right.

"Why is it significant to have it in Te Reo Māori? Firstly it's a straight no-brainer that if you have a Māori language bill that you do introduce it in Māori language.

"In the end it does create a precedent with respect to law that might hit Parliament into the future."