Call to fly Maori flag at Otago Polytechnic

Otago Polytechnic Students’ Association president Ezra Tamati wants the black, white and red Tino...
Otago Polytechnic Students’ Association president Ezra Tamati wants the black, white and red Tino Rangatiratanga Maori flag to fly at the polytechnic. PHOTO: GREGOR RICHARDSON
Otago Polytechnic Students’ Association president Ezra Tamati is campaigning for the Dunedin institute of skills and technology to permanently fly the Maori flag outside its Forth St campus.

The polytechnic board’s Maori advisory committee, Komiti Kawanataka, is to consider his request tomorrow.

If accepted by the advisory committee, Mr Tamati said he was confident the proposal would go ahead.

He understood the Maori flag, Tino Rangatiratanga, had flown at the campus before but not as a permanent feature.

Earlier this year, Ara Institute of Canterbury announced it would fly Tino Rangatiratanga permanently at its Christchurch campus as a symbol of commitment to equity for Maori.

With the help of the polytechnic’s Maori centre, Te Punaka Owheo, Mr Tamati pitched the idea formally last month.

"A lot of people come here because they want a personal transformation through growth, and Otago Polytechnic let you come here and grow," Mr Tamati said.

A spokesman for the polytechnic declined to comment before the March 4 meeting.

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