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Ko toku reo toku ohooho/ My language is my awakening
A vision to create a bilingual Wairoa was launched on 10 December, Human Rights Day, by the Minister of Māori Affairs and Associate Minister for Education, Hon. Dr. Pita Sharples.
Te Wairoa Reorua 2040 is a strategy worked on by local Māori organisations and facilitated by the Human Rights Commission. Commissioner Karen Johansen said Te Wairoa Reorua 2040 was a fitting way to mark International Human Rights Day’s theme “My Voice Counts”.
“The right to use your language is a basic human right and is one that this strategy will help to realise in the years to come,” she said.
Human Rights Day, 10 December, 2012 marks the 64th anniversary of the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights by the United Nations in 1948. Arising from the Universal Declaration, the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) outlines the human rights obligations New Zealand has to Māori as indigenous people. Article 13 says indigenous people have the right to revitalise, use and develop and transmit to future generations their histories, languages, oral traditions, philosophies, writing systems and literatures.
Ms Johansen welcomed the coming together of the people of Wairoa to develop and implement Te Wairoa Reorua 2040. “This is a brave and worthy goal and a way for this community to show the way for the rest of the country.”
The strategy was launched at Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Ngāti Kahungunu o te Wairoa in Kitchener St, Wairoa. On Human Rights Day 2010, the kura declared itself an organisation based on human rights.