25 Mar 2015

Call for support for Australian indigenous rights

8:51 am on 25 March 2015

A Māori business manager based in Australia wants more Māori people to support indigenous rights in the light of Federal Government plans to shut down remote Aboriginal communities.

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott

Tony Abbott has been asked to apologise for his comments on Aboriginal people. Photo: AFP

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott recently announced that his government can't afford to keep funding indigenous communities that are too far away from ammenities such as schools or hospitals.

Brent Reihana, of Ngāpuhi descent, said Māori needed to show their solidarity with the tāngata whenua of Australia.

"There are communities, remote communities, that are being supported by Māori. We've gotta acknowledge those people first because they're at the coal face," said Mr Reihana.

"And when they turn and look for support we really should be all that we can ... because I think mainstream Australia see this as quite a nuisance that will go away."

"Making ourselves known to MPs that that's where we want our action taken, I think that's where we can make a difference."

Mr Reihana said he wanted Māori communities to rally together and spread the message on social media that they do not support the Australian government's idea to close down remote indigenous communities.

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