Māori Party co-leaders Marama Fox and Te Ururoa Flavell say the International day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples helps shine a light on the continuing battle for indigenous peoples’ rights
“The Māori Party has long fought for the rights of indigenous people not only in Aotearoa but throughout the world,” Ms Fox says.
“You can trace our roots in protest and fighting for indigenous rights from the Foreshore and Seabed through to our more current issues like the Kermadec Sanctuary and the Resource Management Act,” Mr Flavell says.
Ms Fox says, in 2007, when the Government of the time voted against the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, it was the Māori Party who stood up and slammed the action as shameful.
“Three years later it was through the efforts of the former Māori Party co-leaders Kahurangi Tariana Turia and Tā Pita Sharples that the Government supported the Declaration.”
Mr Flavell says the fight for the rights of the estimated 370 million indigenous people of the world continues.
“Indigenous people account for 15 per cent of the world’s poorest and while indigenous peoples have made advancements in the last 10 years, indigenous people overwhelmingly continue to face discrimination, marginalisation and major challenges in enjoying their basic rights,” Ms Fox says.