9 Aug 2013

Whanau march in support of former kohanga head

7:19 pm on 9 August 2013

Hundreds of Bay of Plenty whanau have marched to the Kohanga Reo National Trust Board headquarters in Wellington to protest the departure of the movement's chief executive, Titoki Black.

The board last month confirmed Ms Black would not be returning to the position after an internal audit discovered the trust received nearly $800,000 of funding for a course it had not gained accreditation for.

However, the Mataatua-Tauranga Moana branch says the trust did not follow the correct procedure in letting Ms Black go, and they want her reinstated.

Te Teko kohanga reo teacher Lorraine Hale was among the estimated 300 people who marched from the national museum, Te Papa Tongarewa, to the national kohanga office this morning. The group had travelled to Wellington from Bay of Plenty yesterday.

Ms Hale said the board needed to review its processes because it went against their tikanga, or practices.

Board co-chair Tina Olsen-Ratana said the whanau had every right to raise their concerns and planned to visit the Mataatua-Tauranga Moana branch and its whanau on Tuesday to discuss matters.